For the second time in three years, McKendree University senior defensive end Lucky Baar has been named to the Associated Press Little All-America Team.
Baar earned first-team AP Little All-America honors on the 2016 squad that was released Saturday. The AP Little All-America Team is composed of players from NCAA Division II, Division III and NAIA programs.
Baar, a Chicago-Morgan Park product, was also named as a first-team honoree for the same award following his sophomore season in 2014.
In 2016, Baar led NCAA Division II in sacks per game with 1.94 per contest. It is the second time in his career that Baar led all Division II players in sacks. He also topped the list in 2014. In addition, Baar was third among all Division II players in tackles for loss, averaging 2.4 per game.
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On the year, Baar had 55 total tackles, which was good for sixth on the Bearcats’ squad. He led McKendree and the Great Lakes Valley Conference with 21.5 tackles for loss and 17.5 quarterback sacks.
Baar also became the NCAA Division II career leader in sacks, finishing with 46.5 over his four-year career for the Bearcats. He also became the Bearcats’ career leader in tackles for loss with 65.5, and is tied for the program mark in forced fumbles with eight. Baar earned All-GLVC first-team honors along the defensive line for a third-consecutive year in 2016.
The AP Little All-America award adds to an impressive list of national postseason accolades for Baar. He was named as a first-team All-America selection by the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA).
The Division II Conference Commissioners Association (D2CCA) recognized Baar as both national Defensive Player of the Year and a first-team All-American.
Baar finished third in the voting for the 2016 Gene Upshaw Award – given annually to the top interior lineman in Division II — and is a finalist for the 2016 Cliff Harris Award, which is presented to the nation’s top small-college defensive player.
The McKendree University football team posted an 8-3 record in 2016, which included a 6-2 mark against GLVC opponents.