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Kasper, Cerroni Lead Titans' 11 All-West Region Selections

Kasper, Cerroni Lead Titans' 11 All-West Region Selections

Offensive Player of the Year Brett Kasper and Coach of the Year Pat Cerroni headline UW-Oshkosh's 11 selections to the 2017 D3football.com All-West Region Teams.

Kasper, a two-time WIAC Offensive Player of the Year, is the second Titan to be voted D3football.com's West Region Offensive Player of the Year and first since Nate Wara in 2012.

Cerroni, who was also named D3football.com West Region Coach of the Year in 2012, has led UW-Oshkosh to the semifinal round of the NCAA Division III Championship for the second straight season.

Representing UW-Oshkosh on the All-West Region First Team are junior Derrick Jennings Jr. at linebacker, senior Kasper at quarterback, junior Tyler Powers at guard, senior Ty Summers at center and junior Dom Todarello at return specialist.

Titans selected to the Second Team are senior running back Dylan Hecker, senior wide receiver Sam Mentkowski, junior punter Turner Geisthardt and junior guard Alex Wendorf.

UW-Oshkosh junior safety Cole Yoder was named to the Third Team.

All 10 Titans received D3football.com All-Region recognition for the first time. UW-Oshkosh's 10 All-West Region players are the most in school history, surpassing the nine mentions in 2012. A total of 41 Titans have collected 48 All-Region mentions since D3football.com's awards program began in 2005.

UW-Oshkosh (12-0), which played in last year's national championship game, have advanced to the semifinal round of the Division III Championship for the third time since 2012. UW-Oshkosh hosts second-ranked University of Mount Union (Ohio) (13-0) in the semifinals at 12:05 p.m. Saturday (Dec. 9) at J. J. Keller Field at Titan Stadium.

Kasper has completed 169 of 254 passes for 2,728 yards with a school-record 32 touchdowns and just four interceptions this season. He matched the program record with six touchdown passes during the Titans' 42-21 victory over Saint John's University (Minn.) during the second round of the NCAA Championship. Kasper has thrown multiple touchdown passes in nine games this season, including four scores against both UW-La Crosse and UW-Stevens Point.

Kasper is among four finalists for the 2017 Gagliardi Trophy, which is awarded annually to the most outstanding Division III football player. He ranks second in the nation with a 195.2 passing efficiency rating and third with 10.74 yards per pass attempt. Kasper, who owns a 40-5 record as a starter, also lists sixth nationally with 16.14 yards per completion and 10th in touchdown passes.

Kasper holds the UW-Oshkosh career records with 9,489 passing yards and 87 touchdown passes. His passing yardage ranks third among active Division III players while his touchdown total lists fourth.

Cerroni, who received his third WIAC Coach of the Year honor this season, guided the Titans to a 7-0 record in league play as UW-Oshkosh produced the sixth perfect WIAC season in program history.

Cerroni has led the Titans to each of their four NCAA postseason appearances and three WIAC titles during his 11 seasons. Cerroni, the program's winningest coach, owns an 89-34 record, including marks of 13-1 in 2012, 11-2 in 2015 and 13-2 last season.

Mentkowski has caught 60 passes for 1,287 yards and 12 touchdowns this season. He is the program's all-time leader in receptions (173), receiving yards (2,951) and receiving touchdowns (26). Mentkowski had a school-record 96-yard touchdown catch and 204 receiving yards against UW-Whitewater this year. He has scored touchdowns in nine games and surpassed 100 receiving yards seven times this season.

Hecker leads the Titans with 151 carries for 896 yards and 15 touchdowns in nine games played this year. He has added 11 catches for 174 yards and one score while completing all three of his passes for 54 yards. Hecker, the program leader with 60 career rushing scores and 372 points, tallied a career-high five touchdowns, including four rushing, during UW-Oshkosh's 41-27 win over Wartburg College (Iowa) in the quarterfinals of the NCAA Championship.

Powers, Summers and Wendorf have spearheaded an offensive line that has yielded just 11 sacks on the year and paved the way for 16 Titans to average 5.6 yards per carry and score 32 rushing touchdowns.

The trio of All-Region offensive linemen has helped the Titans rank third nationally in tackles allowed for loss per game (3.75), 10th in scoring average (41.9) and 18th in rushing yards per contest (245.4). UW-Oshkosh scored more than 40 points seven times this season and rushed for at least 197 yards in 11 contests.

Todarello, the WIAC Special Teams Player of the Year, is one of four Division III players to return both a kickoff and a punt for touchdowns this season. Todarello had a school-record 98-yard kickoff return for a score against UW-River Falls. He also returned a punt for a 61-yard touchdown against Virginia University of Lynchburg.

Todarello ranks 11th in the country with 805 combined kick return yards while listing 18th nationally by averaging 25.1 yards on his 27 kickoff returns. He has also averaged 14 yards on nine punt returns.

Jennings Jr. is fourth on the Titans with 55 tackles. He has a team-leading five interceptions for a defensive unit that ranks 13th nationally in interceptions. Jennings Jr. registered a career-high nine tackles against John Carroll University (Ohio) and snared a pair of interceptions against UW-La Crosse.

Yoder has contributed 50 tackles, five pass breakups and three interceptions. He collected a season-best eight tackles against UW-River Falls.

Geisthardt is averaging 40.9 yards on his 35 punts, including a long of 55 yards and 13 inside the opponents' 20-yard line. He placed five of his six kicks inside the 20-yard line against John Carroll University and averaged a season-high 45.6 yards on five punts against UW-La Crosse.

University of Dubuque (Iowa) senior cornerback Michael Joseph was selected the D3football.com West Region Defensive Player of the Year.

The All-region Teams, selected in balloting by West Region sports information directors and D3football.com staff, were chosen from 259 nominations by Division III member schools. A total of 77 players were chosen.

Players named All-Region are eligible to be considered for D3football.com's All-America honors, which will be announced Dec. 15 during D3football.com's pregame coverage of the 2017 Amos Alonzo Stagg Bowl – the Division III national championship game – in Salem, Va.

2017 D3football.com All-West Region Selections