North Dakota State, the two-time defending NCAA FCS champion, has five players on the Associated Press FCS All-America team, led by first-team selections Marcus Williams and Billy Turner.
Williams, a cornerback who played at Hopkins High School, earned first-team honors for the third consecutive year, while Turner, an offensive tackle who played at Mounds View, was a first-team honoree for the second year in a row.
South Dakota State running back Zach Zenner, a junior from Eagan, also earned first-team honors after rushing for more than 2,000 yards for the second consecutive season. He was a second-team selection last year.
North Dakota State, which is host to New Hampshire at 7 p.m. Saturday in the FCS semifinals, had a second-team selection in defensive lineman Ryan Drevlow and third-team picks in quarterback Brock Jensen and linebacker Grant Olson, a former Wayzata High School standout. All five Bison honorees are seniors.
South Dakota State defensive lineman Bryan Witzmann made the second team, as did South Dakota linebacker Tyler Starr. North Dakota wide receiver Greg Hardin was the all-purpose player on the third-team offense.
• Forbes magazine rates Texas as the most valuable college football team in the country for the fifth consecutive year. The magazine values the Longhorns at $139 million, almost 20 percent more than Notre Dame at No. 2. The Irish are valued at $117 million. Alabama rose from sixth to third at $110 million, followed by SEC West rival LSU. Michigan is fifth at $104 million. Other Big Ten teams in the top 20 are: Ohio State (ninth, $83M), Nebraska (10th, $80M), Penn State (15th, $71M) and Wisconsin (16th, $70M).
• Bowling Green hired Eastern Illinois’ Dino Babers as its new coach. Babers led Eastern Illinois to a 12-2 record and the FCS quarterfinals this season. He replaces Dave Clawson, who guided Bowling Green to a Mid-American Conference championship before leaving for Wake Forest earlier this month.
• Jackson State fired coach Rick Comegy, who had a 55-35 record over eight seasons. The Tigers were 8-4 this season, but the program has had academic issues in the past, failing to meet the NCAA’s APR standards.
• The Fight Hunger Bowl will make history with two female officials this year. The game between Brigham Young and Washington on Dec. 27 in San Francisco will be called by a crew from Conference USA that includes Sarah Thomas as line judge and Maia Chaka as head linesman. NCAA national coordinator of officials Rogers Redding said it is the first time two female officials have worked the same FBS game.