Posted by Matt Sullivan on 1999-08-15

Samford University linebacker Fred Bishop continued to collect preseason awards Sunday when he was named the Division I-AA All-Independent Preseason Defensive Player-of-the-Year, in voting done by sports information directors at the 14 Division I-AA independent schools.

Bishop, from Tuscaloosa, was one of two Samford players to be named preseason All-Independent as he was joined by senior punter Brian Holmes. Bishop, a first-team Division I-AA All-Independent selection in 1998, recorded a career-high 136 tackles as a junior. The 5-foot-11, 235-pound Bishop has already been named a preseason first-team All-American by the Sporting News and was selected as Division I-AA Independent Defensive Player-of-the-Year by Street & Smith's.

Holmes, from Stone Mountain, Ga., was selected at punter after recording a 41.8 average last season with 12 punts inside the opponents' 20-yard line. He established a new school record with a 76-yard punt last season against Troy State.

Hofstra placed six athletes, including quarterback Giovanni Carmazzi who was named preseason offensive player-of-the-year, on the squad. Liberty had four players on the team, while Elon College and Southern Utah had three players named. Samford, Charleston Southern, Morehead State, St. John's and South Florida each placed two players on the team.
About Samford University – Samford University is a premier nationally ranked private university deeply rooted in its Christian mission. Founded in 1841, Samford is the 87th oldest institution of higher education in the United States. U.S. News & World Report ranks Samford 4th among regional universities in the South. Samford enrolls 5,619 students from 44 states, the District of Columbia and 29 other countries in its 10 academic units: arts, arts and sciences, business, divinity, education, health professions, law, nursing, pharmacy, and public health. Samford also fields 17 NCAA Division I teams that compete in the tradition-rich Southern Conference.