Published on August 7, 2018 by Joey Mullins  
2018 Preseason All America

Three members of the Samford University football team were named to the STATS preseason All-America teams.
 
Quarterback Devlin Hodges and defensive lineman Ahmad Gooden were named to the first team. Wide receiver Kelvin McKnight earned second-team honors.
 
Hodges, the two-time SoCon Offensive Player of the Year, passed for 3,983 yards and 31 touchdowns. He completed 65.7 percent of his passes (347-of-528) and averaged 331.9 passing yards per game. Hodges led the Southern Conference and ranked in the top 10 nationally in passing yards per game, total offense per game and total offensive plays. Hodges came in fourth in the voting for the Walter Payton Award, given to the FCS' top offensive player.
 
Gooden, who was named the SoCon's Defensive Player of the Year, ranked second on the team and sixth in the Southern Conference in total tackles with 101. He also led the team and ranked second in the SoCon in tackles for loss with 15.5, and he tied for fourth in the league in sacks with 5.5. Gooden finished seventh in the voting for the Buck Buchanan Award, which goes to the top defensive player in all of FCS football.
 
McKnight led the SoCon in receptions per game (7.8), receiving yards per game (107.2), total receptions (86) and total receiving yards (1,179) last season. He tallied at least 100 receiving yards in six games last season, and he had at least one touchdown in eight contests in 2017.
 
Samford returns 10 starters on offense and six starters on defense from a team that went 8-4 overall and 6-2 in Southern Conference play last season. The Bulldogs have reached the NCAA Division I-FCS Playoffs in back-to-back seasons for the first time since the 1991 and 1992 seasons.
 
Samford will open the 2018 season by hosting Shorter on Thursday, Aug. 30, at Seibert Stadium, with the kickoff time set for 6:30 p.m.

 
Samford is a leading Christian university offering undergraduate programs grounded in the liberal arts with an array of nationally recognized graduate and professional schools. Founded in 1841, Samford is the 87th-oldest institution of higher learning in the United States. The Wall Street Journal ranks Samford 1st nationally for student engagement and U.S. News & World Report ranks Samford 37th in the nation for best undergraduate teaching and 97th nationally for best value. Samford enrolls 5,758 students from 48 states and 22 countries in its 10 academic schools: arts, arts and sciences, business, divinity, education, health professions, law, nursing, pharmacy and public health. Samford fields 17 athletic teams that compete in the tradition-rich Southern Conference, and ranks 3rd nationally for its Graduation Success Rate among all NCAA Division I schools.