BOURBONNAIS, IL (12/18/2013)(readMedia)-- Olivet Nazarene University football's placekicker Andrew Muzljakovich - a senior, majoring in biology, from Vicksburg - has capped off an outstanding season and career with his selection to the 25-man 2013 American Football Coaches Association (AFCA)-National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) All-America First Team, announced today by the selection committee. This is his first selection to the All-America team, and he is the first Tiger to be named to the distinction since Jeremy Robinson in 2007.
The AFCA has selected an All-America team each year since 1945 and currently selects teams in all five of its divisions. What makes these teams so special is that they are the only ones chosen exclusively by the men who know the players the best - the coaches themselves.
During the 2013 season, Muzljakovich started all 11 games and finished second on the team in scoring with 58 points. He had 13 made field goals (13-17) with a career-long of 49 yards against St. Francis (Ill.) on Sept. 7. He converted all 19 PATs. He had 43 kickoffs for 2,674 yards (62.2 avg.) and 25 touchbacks. He finished with 59 punts for 2,443 yards (41.4 avg.) and a long of 64 yards.
Muzljakovich was named the Mid-States Football Association's (MSFA) Midwest League Special Teams Player of the Week four times during the season, finishing with nine such honors in his college career. He finished first in the league in punting, second in kickoff coverage (39.9), second on field goal percentage (.765) and first in PATS (1.000).
He was also a MSFA Midwest League First Team Offense selection as a placekicker and honorable mention selection as a punter. He finished his career fourth all-time for the Tigers in punting yards (4,924) and scoring (198).
In addition to these honors, on Sunday, Dec. 8, 2013, Muzljakovich helped the Red Nation team win the 4th Annual National Bowl Game 40-26. He was named the Overall Special Teams MVP, scoring eight points and making a 56-yard field goal, setting a new National Bowl record.
He finished that game making 2-for-4 field goals and 2-of-3 PATs. He had eight kickoffs for an average of 59 yards and two touchbacks. He also punted three times for 145 yards, good for a 48.3 average.
"Andrew really stepped up his game this year," said Brian Fish, head coach for Olivet Tigers' football. "He's always had a strong leg, and he became a lot more consistent this year. On his long-range field goals, he had exceptional percentages beyond 40 yards. We're going to help make sure that his name is known in various professional leagues. He's obviously the best placekicker in the NAIA."
Olivet Nazarene University is an accredited Christian, liberal arts university offering more than 100 areas of undergraduate and graduate study, including the Doctor of Education in ethical leadership. Olivet has one main campus in Bourbonnais, Ill. - just 50 miles south of Chicago; three additional sites: Rolling Meadows and Oak Brook, Ill., and Hong Kong; and more than 100 School of Graduate and Continuing Studies learning locations throughout Chicagoland and the Midwest. From Oxford to Tokyo, hundreds of Olivet students also experience the global classroom each year, whether through study abroad opportunities or worldwide mission trips.
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Public Relations Specialist
Olivet Nazarene University