Trio of Bulldogs Earn HERO Sports Preseason All-America Recognition

Trio of Bulldogs Earn HERO Sports Preseason All-America Recognition
Quarterback Brandon Rainey runs against Samford Saturday at Johnson Hagood Stadium. (Source: The Citadel Athletics)

CHARLESTON, S.C. – The Citadel football team had three members earn preseason All-America recognition by HERO Sports, the organization announced Thursday. Brandon Rainey was a first-team selection as an athlete, while Willie Eubanks III was a third-team selection at linebacker and Alex Ramsey was a third-team selection as an all-purpose back.

Rainey, who was a HERO Sports Third-Team All-American in 2019, enters his final season after putting together one of the best seasons by a quarterback in school history. He accounted for a school-record 30 touchdowns and became just the second signal caller in school history to rush for and throw for at least 10 touchdowns in the same season.

He finished the year by rushing for 900 yards and 17 touchdowns, while also throwing for 1,114 yards and 13 touchdowns. The 13 touchdown passes tied for the seventh most in a single season, and are the most since the 2008 season. Rainey is also the first quarterback to throw for more than 1,000 yards in a season since Bart Blanchard in 2008. Rainey rushed for a touchdown in nine of the 11 games played, including three rushing touchdowns against Elon, Samford and VMI. He also threw for a touchdown in nine games, including throwing two touchdown passes against Samford and Chattanooga. All in all, Rainey ran for and threw for a touchdown in eight games during the season.

Eubanks is coming off a season in which he earned All-America recognition from several organizations. He was tabbed a First-Team All-American by the Associated Press, American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) and Phil Steele Magazine, as well as a Second-Team All-American by STATS.

The Buck Buchanan Award finalist finished the year with 112 tackles, 63 solo, 11.5 tackles-for-loss, 4.0 sacks, three forced fumbles, one fumble recovery, one interception and 11 quarterback hurries. He became the first Bulldog to eclipse 100 tackles since Kailik Williams in 2016 and his tackle total is the highest since Travis Stephens (144) and Denny Haywood (134) in 2000. Eubanks recorded double-digit tackles in six of the 12 games this season, including three of the last four games. He posted a season-high 13 tackles and three quarterback hurries against Elon. He recorded 10 solo tackles and forced a fumble on a sack against Samford. Against Chattanooga, Eubanks was credited with nine solo tackles, while adding four tackles-for-loss, two sacks and a forced fumble.

Ramsey was named a Second-Team All-American by the Associated Press, AFCA and STATS after rushing for 1,326 yards and 22 touchdowns at VMI last season. He also added 50 catches for 323 yards.

The 2019 Walter Payton Award finalist posted six 100-yard performances, including a career-high 207 yards against Wofford. Two weeks later, Ramsey rushed for six touchdowns in an overtime victory against Samford.