4 Volunteers are All-SEC
by UTSPORTS.COM
Dec 10, 2013 | 291 views | 0 0 comments | 9 9 recommendations | email to a friend | print
KNOXVILLE — Four Tennessee football players were named to the Associated Press All-SEC Team Monday.

Junior linebacker A.J. Johnson was named to the First Team while offensive linemen Ja’Wuan James and Antonio Richardson earned second team honors. Michael Palardy was named All-SEC honorable mention punter.

The AP All-SEC honor is the first for James, Johnson, and Palardy. Richardson was named to the AP All-SEC second team last season.

Gainesville, Ga. native Johnson became the first Vol to record 100 tackles in back to back seasons since Earnest Fields did so in 1990-91 finishing his 2013 campaign with 106.

Johnson also notched 8.5 tackles for a loss of 17 yards, tying a career high, while also recovering a fumble and breaking up three passes. Johnson notched five double-digit tackling efforts in 2013, bringing his career total to 18. He currently sits in third place on the UT career assisted tackles list with 164.

James, right tackle, and Richardson, left tackle, both played and started in each of the Vols 12 games this season. The duo helped the Vols to 2,261 rushing yards in 2013, the most by UT since 2004.

Over the course of the season, the Vols offensive line helped UT to five 200-yard rushing games and a 1,000-yard rusher in Rajion Neal, the first 1,000 yard rusher since Poole in 2010.

James started all 49 games of his college career, all at right tackle. With 49 starts, the Suwanee, Ga., native set the record for career starts by an offensive lineman in Tennessee history, passing Jeff Smith (48). His 49 games played, stands second to former teammate and 2013 Senior Bowl invitee Dallas Thomas (50) for most games played on the offensive line at Tennessee.

Nashville native Richardson, who was named to the AP All-SEC second team last season, has started the last 24 games at left tackle for the Vols.

Ray Guy Award semifinalist Palardy finished his senior season with a 44.5 punting average, ranking him third among UT punters with a minimum of 50 punts in a single season. Palardy finished his career with a 42.9 punting average which ranks second all-time at Tennessee.

The senior launched 18 punts of 50 yards or more while 17 of Palardy's punts landed inside the 10-yard line and 33 inside the 20-yard line. The senior finished the year is 14-of-17 on the season and 37-of-50 (.740) in his career for field goals, which ranks third all-time among Tennessee kickers.