Nebraska Wesleyan football player Kyle Elsasser (Jr., Bancroft, Neb., Bancroft-Rosalie High School) has been named to the ESPN The Magazine Academic All-America® Team as selected by the College Sports Information Directors Association (CoSIDA).
Elsasser, who made the First Team in the College Division, majors in physics and owns a 3.92 cumulative grade point average. From his linebacker position, he led the team in tackles this season (36 solo, 34 assisted) and earned honorable mention accolades from the Great Plains Athletic Conference (GPAC).
Individually, he had 3 sacks and 8.5 tackles for loss in 2006. He also recovered a fumble and returned it 72 yards on Nov. 4 in the team’s 26-19 senior day victory over Concordia University (Neb.). For the season, Elsasser ranked 15th in the GPAC for tackles per game and led NWU’s defensive unit, which ranked 10th nationally in the NAIA for total defense (217.7 yards allowed per game).
Elsasser started all 10 games for the Prairie Wolves, who finished the year 7-3 and were No. 23 in the final regular season NAIA rating. Nebraska Wesleyan had its best overall record since 2000, and the team’s only three losses were to opponents who qualified for and advanced to the quarterfinals in the NAIA Playoffs.
Nebraska Wesleyan ranks among the all-time leaders in the entire nation, regardless of division (NCAA I, II, III and NAIA), with 63 student-athletes, who have won a total of 95 Academic All-America awards between them.