Michael Joseph DPOY, Five Others Grab IIAC Honors

Nov 16, 2017

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa – The Iowa Conference released their postseason honors for the 2017 football season and University of Dubuque’s Michael Joseph, was named Defensive Player of the Year. Dwayne Allen Jr. joined Joseph as a first team all-conference honoree. Doug Gates, Le’Devin Smith and Collin Stefanowski were selected IIAC second team. Derek Trotter rounded out the Spartans on the list as a honorable mention selection.

This was the third straight year that cornerback, Michael Joseph, was named Iowa Conference First Team Defense. In route to his Defensive Player of the Year honor, Joseph led the Iowa Conference with eight interceptions and was tied for third in all of NCAA Division III. To go along with his eight interceptions he added 16 passes defender, eight pass break ups, 56 tackles and one kickoff return for a touchdown. Joseph recently received an invite to the 2018 Reese’s Senior Bowl.

Dwayne Allen Jr. grabbed his first All-Conference honor after leading the Iowa Conference in rushing with 1238 total yards, averaging 7.7 yards per carry and 137.6 yards per game. His 1238 total yards is the second most rushing yards in a single season in school history. Allen added 10 rushing touchdowns.

Defensive lineman Doug Gates and linebacker Le’Devin Smith joined each other on the IIAC Second Team Defense. Gates totaled 30 total tackles in 2017, 9.5 of those went for a loss and 6.5 were sacks, both of those led the Spartans. Gates even had one interception and returned it for 37 yards, one pass breakup and one fumble recovery. Le’Devin Smith was second on the team with 73 tackles, 38 solo and 35 assists. Smith grabbed one sack, forced one fumble, three pass break ups and two quarterback hurries. This was the second straight season Smith was selected IIAC Second Team Defense.

Collin Stefanowski, a junior from Lake Villa, Illinois, started on the offensive line in all 10 of the Spartans games in 2017 and has started in all 19 games that he has played in during the past two seasons. 

After receiving second team honors last year, Derek Trotter was the lone Spartan to be named honorable mention. Trotter racked up 87 tackles during the season, 39 solo and 48 assists. The 87 tackles led the Spartans and was 10th in the Iowa Conference. To go along with the 87 tackles, Trotter had 2.5 tackles for loss, two interceptions, five pass break-ups and seven passes defended.

UD went 6-4 in 2017 and 4-4 in the Iowa Conference.