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Dec. 4, 2006

University of South Carolina linebacker Jasper Brinkley has been named to the first-team All-Southeastern Conference football team, as selected by the Associated Press, it was announced late this afternoon.

“That’s great,” said Brinkley when he learned of the honor. “It’s a blessing. It shows that a lot of hard work is paying off. I never thought much about it, but it’s an honor to be on that team and represent South Carolina.”

Brinkley, a 6-2, 258-pound junior from Thomson, Ga., is the Gamecocks’ leading tackler with 96 total stops, nearly twice as many as any other player on the squad. An amazing 80 percent of those (77 of 96) have been solo stops. He ranks fourth in the league in tackles, averaging 8.0 per game. Brinkley also leads the team and is tied for sixth in the SEC with 12.5 tackles per loss. He led the team in tackles in seven of 12 games, including a career-high 13 (11 solos) against Florida, and had 11 stops against Mississippi State.

Other Gamecocks receiving votes included offensive tackle Jamon Meredith, placekicker Ryan Succop and cornerback Fred Bennett.

The Gamecocks (7-5) will wrap up their season on Friday, Dec. 29 when they travel to Memphis, Tenn. to face the Houston Cougars (10-3), champions of Conference USA, in the 48th annual AutoZone Liberty Bowl.