Roby placed on AP All-America first team

By Jacob Knabel on Dec. 16, 2017 in Football

USA Today news release

SEWARD, Neb. – Senior Tarence Roby has established a reputation as one of the top defensive players in the NAIA. Over the past week, Roby had already been named a NAIA second team All-American by the American Football Coaches Association and a nominee for the Cliff Harris Award (presented to the nation’s top small college football defensive player). Then on Friday (Dec. 15), the Associated Press tabbed Roby as a first team All-American.

The AP All-America teams were selected by a panel of sports information directors from conferences and schools around the country. The panel included Concordia’s director of athletic communications.

Other recent Bulldogs to garner All-America recognition were defensive lineman Trey Barnes (2015 and 2016), defensive back Darnell Woods (2013) and kicker Kenny Zoeller (2012). Roby joins other All-American defensive backs such as Woods and Sean Stewart (2002), the program’s all-time interception leader and a member of the Concordia Athletic Hall of Fame.

Roby starred as one of the most electrifying talents in the conference. The native of Rockford, Ill., has been named an all-conference choice in each of his four seasons in Seward. The highlight reel play of his senior season was a 100-yard interception for a touchdown in the win over Ottawa that landed him on ESPN’s SportsCenter. On the year, Roby posted 31 tackles, seven pass breakups, four interceptions and a forced fumble. He also piled up 1,041 all-purpose yards (718 kick return, 166 punt return, 151 interception return) while serving as one of the nation’s top return men. Roby compiled 141 tackles, 27 pass breakups and nine interceptions over his Bulldog career.

2017 Associated Press NAIA Football All-Americans



Quarterback – Tanner Trosin, senior, Southern Oregon.

Running backs – Bubba Jenkins, senior, Morningside; Justin Green, junior, St. Francis, Indiana.

Linemen – Trae Bradburn, senior, Morningside; Justin Hunter, senior, Saint Xavier; Trey Coney, sophomore, Reinhardt; Chris Emter, senior, Carroll College; Xavier Carter, senior, Reinhardt;

Tight end – Trenton Poe-Evans, sophomore, Kansas Wesleyan.

Receivers – Hayden Adams, senior, Dakota Wesleyan; Connor Niles, junior, Morningside.

All-purpose player – Charles Ducksworth, senior, Point.

Kicker – Daniel Martinez, senior, Wayland Baptist.


Linemen – Jamarae Finnie, senior, Langston; Evan Sprayberry, junior, Tabor; Tevin McCoy, junior, Reinhardt; Resean Coleman, sophomore, William Penn.

Linebackers – Caden McDonald, senior, Morningside; Piercen Harnish, junior, St. Francis, Indiana; Thomas Sease, senior, Dickinson State.

Backs – Darius Price, senior, Siena Heights; Tomunci Whitfield, senior, Southwestern, Kansas; Tarence Roby, senior, Concordia, Nebraska; Nate Moore, senior, College of Idaho.

Punter – Derek Brush, senior, Arizona Christian.



Quarterback – Dillon Turner, senior, Dakota Wesleyan.

Running backs – JD Woods, freshman, Baker; Jacob Kalogonis, sophomore, Northwestern, Iowa.

Linemen – Avery Lock, senior, Valley City State; Spencer Baalman, senior, Tabor; Garrett Bader, senior, Benedictine; Zac Lawson, senior, Lindsey Wilson; Darrion McAlister, senior, Marian.

Tight end – J.C. Koerselman, senior, Northwestern, Iowa.

Receivers – Lexus Jackson, senior, St. Francis, Illinois; LaQuvionte Gonzalez, senior, Southeastern, Florida.

All-purpose player – Tahj Willingham, senior, Hastings College.

Kicker – Mario Esparaza, senior Southwester, Kansas.


Linemen – Chris Overton, senior, St. Ambrose; Sean Rogers, junior, Southern Oregon; Josh Evans, senior, Evangel; Jason Lupkes, senior, Morningside.

Linebackers – Michael Arenas, senior, Eastern Oregon; Trent Mueller, junior, Lindsey Wilson; Garrett Updegraft, senior, Kansas Wesleyan.

Backs – Nate McLaurin, junior, Baker; Jay Liggins, junior, Dickinson State; Cole Wiseman, senior, Doane; Tionte McDaniel, sophomore, St. Xavier.

Punter – Drake Higgins, sophomore, Missouri Valley.

Selection panel: Mike Byker, Dordt College; Kelli Elmore, Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference; Wally Feldt, Frontier Conference; Jo Jo Freeman, Cumberland, Tennessee; Tim Goozen, Arizona Christian; Nick Huntimer, North Star Athletic Association; Jake Knabel, Concordia, Nebraska; Gus Kautz, KAIR Radio; Kevin Lewis, Wayland Baptist; Eric Montgomery, Heart of America Athletic Conference; Sean Ostrander, Robert Morris, Illinois; Mark Potts, Valley City State; Bill Scott, St. Francis, Indiana; Dave Toelle, Kansas Wesleyan; Chris Wells, Mid-South Conference.


2017 – Tarence Roby, defensive back (first team – Associated Press; second team – AFCA)

2016 – Trey Barnes, defensive line (first team)

2015 – Trey Barnes, defensive line (second team)

2013 – Darnell Woods, safety (first team)

2012 – Derek Blessing, punt returner (first team – Beyond Sports Network)

2012 – Kenny Zoeller, kicker (first team)

2007 – JaMaine Lewis, running back (second team – Victory Sports Network)

2007 – Jeff Neujahr, kick/punt returner (honorable mention – Victory Sports Network)

2006 – Jeff Neujahr, kick/punt returner (honorable mention – Victory Sports Network)

2004 – Matthew Egger, punter

2002 – Sean Stewart, safety (second team)

2001 – Erik DeHaven, linebacker

2001 – Sean Stewart, safety (honorable mention)

2001 – Ross Wurdeman, tight end (first team)

2000 – Drew Ekart, defensive back (honorable mention)

2000 – Sean Stewart, safety (honorable mention)

2000 – Ross Wurdeman, tight end (first team)

1996 – Ed McLaughlin, offensive line (honorable mention)

1995 – Mike Hoernemann, linebacker (honorable mention)

1994 – Travis Soukup, tight end/punter (first team)

1984 – Kahlil King, safety (first team)

1984 – Cleve Wester, running back

1982 – Gary Pomerenke, defensive line (first team)

1981 – Gary Pomerenke, defensive line (second team)

1965 – Dennis Oetting, lineman (honorable mention)

1964 – Bob Oetting, lineman

1961 – Larry Oetting, lineman

1959 – John Suhr, quarterback/safety/punter

1956 – Gary Seevers, running back

1955 – Gary Seevers, running back