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McClellan C-USA defensive player of the year

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. — Albert McClellan proved to be good. Marshall coach Mark Snyder is looking forward to him being better.

McClellan, the Thundering Herd sophomore defensive end, was voted the Defensive Player of the Year in Conference USA Wednesday.

“The beautiful thing about Albert is he is only a sophomore and he can continue to improve over the next two seasons,” Snyder said.

“Albert McClellan is a very talented football player and I am glad that the league’s media members recognized him with this honor.”

McClellan must have been listening to his coach.

“I know I have to keep working hard and continue to get better and that’s what I am going to do. This just goes to show that hard work pays off,” McClellan said.

The 6-foot-2, 225-pound McClellan led C-USA with 11.5 quarterback sacks and 19 tackles for losses. He was second in the league with four forced fumbles.

McClellan had 77 total tackles including nine against East Carolina.

“This is a great honor and it is something I want to share with my teammates and coaches,” McClellan said. “I just go out every game and try to help my team win and for people to think enough of me to even be considered for this means a lot.”

C-USA also honored Houston senior quarterback Kevin Holb as the Offensive Player of the Year, UTEP senior return man Johnnie Lee Higgins Jr. as the best Special Teams player and SMU red-shirt quarterback Justin Willis as the Freshman of the Year.