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December 4, 2012HATTIESBURG, Miss. - Southern Miss senior defensive lineman Jamie Collins (McCall Creek, Miss.) earned Conference USA first-team honors Tuesday in a vote taken by the league's 12 head coaches.
Collins led the team in tackles in 2012 with 92 and also ranked first in C-USA in tackles for loss (20.0) and third in sacks (10.0), which both rank fifth on the school's single-season chart. His tackles for loss number currently ranked tied for No. 7 in the country, while his sack total was 21st nationally.
The Golden Eagle defensive end forced four fumbles during the campaign, which ranks tied for 3rd on the school's single-season chart and holds a 5th-place on the school's career chart with seven fumbles forced. It was the 3rd consecutive season a Golden Eagle has forced four fumbles.
He posted three double-digit tackle performances during the year including a season-high 13 against Nebraska and 10 versus Boise State.
Collins is the 42nd first-team defensive honoree for Southern Miss in Conference USA since its inaugural season in 1996.
The Golden Eagles also added four players that garnered honorable mention accolades, senior offensive linemen Jason Weaver (New Orleans, La.) and Austin Quattrochi (Marietta, Ga.) on offense and sophomore tackle Rakeem Nunez-Roches (Phenix City, Ala.) and junior cornerback Deron Wilson (New Orleans, La.) on defense.
Weaver, which was granted a sixth-year of eligibility after getting injured during the 2010 campaign, started 25 games, including the last 23 contests, while Quattrochi, a four-year letterwinner, started in 27 contests, which includes his final 25 contests.
Nunez-Roches posted 37 total tackles, while adding one sack and six tackles for loss, as well as posting one pass break up, one forced fumble and one blocked field goal. He tallied a blocked extra point against Louisville and had a season-high six tackles at SMU. Nunez-Roches tallied three or more tackles in eight games this season.
Wilson, who has started in all 39 games of his career, ranked third on the team in tackles with 61 while collecting one interception, giving him now eight for his career to go along with his first fumble recovery and a team-best nine pass break ups. He registered a season-high 13 stops against Nebraska to go along with nine against UCF and eight versus UAB. He had five or more tackles in six games this season.