Dec. 15, 2009
University of South Carolina senior linebacker Eric Norwood has been named first-team All-America by the Associated Press, it was announced Tuesday. He becomes the first Gamecock to make the A.P. first team since Del Wilkes and James Seawright in 1984.
It’s the third All-America team the 6-1, 252-pounder has been selected to this season. Norwood became the 18th player in Carolina history and the first since Ko Simpson in 2005 to earn first-team All-America accolades when he was selected to the first-team squad by the Walter Camp Football Foundation, which was announced last week. Earlier today he was named to the third-team All-America squad by Sporting News magazine.
Norwood is a three-time first-team All-SEC selection according to the league’s coaches and has been named first-team All-SEC by the Associated Press in each of the last two years after earning second team honors as a sophomore. He was one of five finalists for the 2009 Butkus Award. Norwood is Carolina’s all-time leader in both sacks (29.0) and tackles for loss (54.5) and is the SEC active leader in both categories. In 2009, Norwood ranks second on the squad with 71 tackles including 49 solo stops. He is third in the SEC in sacks (7.0) and is tied for eighth with 11.5 tackles for loss. He leads the team with two interceptions and with three blocked kicks. He has been credited with 11 quarterback hurries, three pass breakups and a fumble recovery.
Norwood and his Gamecock teammates will begin their bowl practice schedule today at the Bluff Road practice fields. The Gamecocks (7-5) are preparing for the Papajohns.com Bowl in which they will take on the UConn Huskies (7-5) out of the Big East Conference. The game is set for 1 p.m. CT in Birmingham, Ala. on Saturday, January 2, 2010.