This is a press release from Southern Miss athletics.
CLEVELAND, Ohio – Phil Steele has released his postseason All-Conference USA team and three members of the Southern Miss football team were named to the list. Placekicker Corey Acosta and defensive lineman Rakeem Nunez-Roches were named first team, while defensive lineman Dasman McCullum earned third team honors.
Earlier this month, Acosta and Nunez-Roches earned First Team All-Conference honors as voted on by the league's head coaches. McCullum was also named to the All-C-USA team, earning honorable mention accolades.
Phil Steele's College Football Preview is one of the nation's most informative preseason football magazines and has always released preseason, midseason and postseason All-American teams as well as All-Conference teams. For a full list of All-Conference teams, visit philsteele.com.
Acosta, a Wuerffel Trophy finalist and Lou Groza Award semifinalist, was named Academic All-American in his final season in the Black and Gold. In addition, he was tabbed Academic All-District and Academic All-Conference USA. The Memphis native was named C-USA Special Teams Player of the Week (Oct. 20). During the season, Acosta converted 19-of-25 field goals to go along with 21-of-23 extra points for a team-high 78 points. He converted eight field goals in a row at one point and made career-best four field goals in consecutive games against Alcorn State and on the road at No. 3 Alabama. Acosta was tabbed a Lou Groza Award Star of the Week (Sept. 8, 2014). He made a pair of tries from 50 yards or farther, including a career-best 52-yard make against Rice.
Nunez-Roches played and started in 11 games on the year. He finished the season ranked sixth on the team in total tackles with 58 (32 solos) and first in tackles for loss with 14.0. The Dangriga, Belize native was second on the team with seven quarterback hurries. Nunez-Roches added a blocked field goal at UTEP which turned into a Southern Miss return for a touchdown. The junior tallied a career-best 11 tackles at UTEP. Nunez-Roches had at least five stops in six games this season including seven at Mississippi State, nine versus Appalachian State and six versus Rice. The honor is the second of Nunez-Roches' career as he was tabbed 2012 All-Conference USA honorable mention.
McCullum played and started in all 12 games this season. He ranked fifth on the team in tackles with 61 (38 solo, 23 assists). McCullum added 13 tackles for loss a team-best 4.5 sacks, four forced fumbles – which is tied for third on the Golden Eagles single-season chart – an interception, a fumble recovery and a blocked extra point against Appalachian State in the waning moments to help the Eagles secure a 21-20 victory. The Hebron, Miss. native was earned his first ever C-USA Defensive Player of the Week honor against Appalachian State, registering a career-best 10 tackles in that contest. McCullum had five or more tackles in seven games this season.