Football Bears Honored at Season Banquet
All-America Safety - Caleb Schaffitzel
All-America Safety - Caleb Schaffitzel

Dec. 8, 2013


SPRINGFIELD -- Missouri State All-American defensive back Caleb Schaffitzel (Jr., S, Fair Grove, Mo.) once again took home some of the team's top honors and accolades at the Bears' annual Football Recognition Banquet held at Plaster Student Union on Sunday (Dec. 8) where he was recognized as both Team MVP and Media Player of the Year for the second year in a row.

Schaffitzel registered a team-high 109 tackles this season and snagged 4 interceptions with 11 passes defended. Last week, he became the first Bear to earn first-team Academic All-America honors since 1978 when he landed a position on the prestigious Capital One CoSIDA Academic All-America Team. He is a two-time All-MVFC first-team honoree, two-time Academic All-MVFC first-team selection and three-time MVFC Defensive Player of the Week.



The MSU Player of the Year award was known as the Coors Player of the Year Award from its inception in 1982 until 2008. Schaffitzel is just the fifth player to win the award twice, joining DeAndre Smith (1989-90), DeLaun Fowler (1994-95), Cody Pratt (2003-04) and Cody Kirby (2008, 10).

The other premier honor of the banquet went to senior tight end Matt Swan (Springfield, Mo.) who was named as the recipient of the Arthur Briggs Award. The award is presented annually to a senior player for outstanding athletic performance, scholarship, leadership and character. It has been presented every year since 1991 to help perpetuate the memory of the University's long-time athletics director and the program's all-time winningest football coach.

Swan started all 12 games as a senior, was named to the MVFC All-Academic second team and was a Capital One CoSIDA Academic All-District 6 selection in 2013. Has also blocked 2 punts this season and finished his career as a six-time winner of the MSU Special Teams Player of the Week. Swan is also a four-time recipient of the MVFC Honor Roll Award and 2012 recipient of the MVFC Commissioner's Academic Excellence Award. He was also the Bears 2012 Special Teams Player of the Year.

Coach Terry Allen's staff named Robert Booker (So., OL, Ozark, Mo.) as its 2013 Offensive MVP, while Nick Canavan (Sr., OLB, Norman, Okla.) was named as the club's Defensive MVP.  Booker was an All-MVFC first-team selection this season, while Canavan earned second-team all-conference honors.

Booker started all 12 games at center in 2013 and carried out 98 percent of his assignments while grading out at 84 percent overall for the season with 86 knockdown blocks. He was named MVFC Offensive Lineman of the Week on Sept. 14 and earned team offensive lineman of the week recognition on three occasions.

Canavan started all 12 games at Will Linebacker spot in 2013 and made 36 starts for his MSU career. In league games, he led the conference in sacks (0.88) and tackles for loss (1.56). For the season, he was third on the club with 80 total tackles, posted 14.5 stops for loss and forced a pair of fumbles.

The Bears Team Award for excellence in leadership on and off the field was presented to seniors Mikael Cooper-Falls (RB, Springfield, Mo.) and Howard Scarborough (CB, Tulsa, Okla.). Cooper-Falls was a seven-game starter during his final season and led the club with 604 rushing yards, while Scarborough earned All-MVFC second-team distinction after leading the league in passes defended (1.57) and PBU's (1.20) to go with a career-high 55 tackles. 

Special Teams Player of the Year honors went to Zac Hoover (RFr., WR, Grain Valley, Mo.). He registered 5 total stops and recovered two fumbles on special teams while earning two starts at wide receiver in his debut season. It was his second year-end honor is as many seasons after earning MSU Offensive Scout Team of the Year laurels in 2012.

Defensive Lineman of the Year honors were bestowed on Anthony Grady (Sr., DE, Texarkana, Ark.), while Offensive Lineman of the Year distinction went to Richard Galbierz (Jr., OG, Fenton, Mo.).  Grady got the starting call 11 times as a senior and earned All-MVFC second-team honors after he notched 48 tackles, knocked down 5 passes and blocked 2 kicks. Galbierz was an All-MVFC honorable mention selection after starting all 12 games at right guard, carrying out a 97-percent assignment grade and an 81-percent overall grade with 52 knockdowns.

Headlining a talented crop of scout team personnel were honorees Calan Crowder (Fr., RB, Bartlesville, Okla.), the 2013 Offensive Scout Team Player of the Year, and Ben Howard (Fr., ILB, St. Louis, Mo.) who was named this year's Defensive Scout Team Player of the Year.

Tevan Ferguson (Sr., DL, Nashville, Tenn.) also was recognized by the athletic training staff as recipient of the Tough Son of a Bear Award, while C.J. Randall (Sr., DL, Chandler, Ariz.) was named Lifter of the Year by the strength and conditioning staff.

The event also gave the coaching staff an opportunity to recognize conference award recipients and team captains. Earning special team captain awards were Swan, Ferguson, Schaffitzel and Zack Cooley (Jr., OT, Lebanon, Mo.). All-conference selections were: first-team selections Schaffitzel and Booker; second-team picks Scarborough, Canavan, Grady and Sybhrian Berry (Sr., CB, Camden, Ark.); and honorable mention nominees: Galbierz, Cooley and Andrew Beisel (Jr., ILB, Fenton, Mo.).  MVFC All-Newcomer picks Brandon Cheaton (Jr., S, Middletown, Del.) and Dylan Cole (Fr., OLB, Rogersville, Mo.) were also recognized along with MVFC All-Academic Team picks Schaffitzel (first team), Swan (second team) and honorable mention selections Beisel, Kurt Kutter (Sr., OG, O'Fallon, Mo.) and Austin Witmer (Sr., K, Grand Island, Neb.). Schaffitzel and Swan were also acknowledge for their CoSIDA Academic All-District 6 honors, in addition to Schaffitzel's Academic All-America award.

The Bears also presented special mementos to the squad's 21 seniors and individual game-ball winners for the Bears' five victories this season. Individual plaques were also presented to the media players of the week, while conference certificates were handed out to the team's six Valley players of the week.

Missouri State completed the season with a 5-7 overall record and tied for second place in the Missouri Valley Football Conference with a 5-3 mark in the 10-member Division I FCS league. The Bears reeled off four straight wins from Oct. 19 to Nov. 9 that included a pair of road victories and a home win over nationally-ranked South Dakota State. Allen will return 13 starters for his ninth season at the helm of the club when spring drills open in late March.


Previous recipients of the top team awards are as follows:

 MSU Player of the Year yearly winners: 1982-DE Darrin Newbold, 1983-FS Mike Armentrout, 1984-RB Johnny Longstreet, 1985-RB Keith Williams, 1986-LB Ken Braden, 1987-LB Matt Soraghan, 1988-LB James Turnage, 1989-QB DeAndre Smith, 1990-QB DeAndre Smith, 1991-DT Bill Walter, 1992-FB Jonah White, 1993-RB Anthony Pegues, 1994-LB DeLaun Fowler, 1995-LB DeLaun Fowler, 1996-RB Michael Cosey, 1997-OT Brad Kubik, 1998-QB Derek Jensen,1999-QB Jay Rodgers, 2000-WR Jeff Hewitt, 2001-LB P. J. Jones, 2002-OC Crockett Ladd, 2003-TB Cody Pratt, 2004-TB Cody Pratt and WR Steven Rush, 2005-WR/KR Michael Sparks, 2006-S Mike Radon/OT Justin Williamson, 2007-TB Gerald Davis, 2008-QB Cody Kirby, 2009-TE Clay Harbor, 2010-QB Cody Kirby, 2011-WR Jermaine Saffold, 2012-DB Caleb Schaffitzel, 2013-DB Caleb Schaffitzel.

 Arthur Briggs Award yearly winners: 1991-OT Tim McDuffey, 1992-OG Matt Irvin, 1993-CB Willie Parks, 1994-OT Ryan Touhey, 1995-OT Jason Whittle, 1996-TE Corey Roy, 1997-FS Jeff Killeen, 1998-P/K Travis Brawner, 1999-P/K Travis Brawner, 2000-TE Matt White, 2001-TB Jason Ringena, 2002-OC Crockett Ladd, 2003-OC Brad Durham, 2004-OC Brad Durham, 2005-OC David Tillman, 2006-TE Payne Hall, 2007-OC David Tillman, 2008-WR Chris Geisz, 2009-WR Jared Emery, 2010-S Skylar Smith, 2011-P Jordan Chiles, 2012-TE Matt Thayer, 2013-TE Matt Swan.

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