College Sports

Beckner, Seibert earn freshman all-America honors

Missouri Tigers defensive lineman Terry Beckner Jr. strutted after sacking the quarterback during a game with the University of South Carolina at Faurot Field Oct. 3.
Missouri Tigers defensive lineman Terry Beckner Jr. strutted after sacking the quarterback during a game with the University of South Carolina at Faurot Field Oct. 3. Shane Keyser/Kansas City Star

Two of last fall's most highly recruited metro-east football players made good on the early promise of their collegiate careers by being named to the ESPN.com True Freshman All-America Team.

Terry Beckner Jr. of East St. Louis announced his intention to attend the University of Missouri before a packed school assembly and a national television audience. His first season in Columbia ended prematurely with a torn ACL, but not before he registered three sacks and eight tackles for loss.

In addition to the ESPN.com list, he also was named to the USA Today Freshman All-America Team.

Belleville West graduate Austin Seibert was the only kicker in NCAA Division I to handle both punting and place kicking duties for his team, the Oklahoma Sooners.

Seibert so far is 17-for-22 in field goals made with a long of 46 yards and is 68-of-70 in point-after kicks. His eight-straight field goals to begin his college career is an Oklahoma record.

The Oklahoma freshman was the Big 12 special teams player of the week after nailing three field goals and five extra points against West Virginia and was a finalist for the Ray Guy Award, which goes annually to college’s best punter.

He was second in the Big 12 in punting, averaging 42.4 yards per punt. Twenty of his 51 punts were downed inside the 20, and 27 more resulted in fair catches.

Seibert and the No. 4 Sooners still must face top-ranked Clemson in the Orange Bowl Dec. 31 at 3 p.m. The winner will play in the NCAA National Championship game Jan. 11 against the winner of the Cotton Bowl.

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