The honors keep on coming for the Stanford football team, which on Thursday had right guard David DeCastro, outside linebacker Chase Thomas and tight end Coby Fleener named to the Sporting News All-America team.
Stanford's three selections were tied with LSU and ranked second only to Alabama's four on the Sporting News All-America squad. By conference, the SEC had nine representatives, followed by the Pac-12 and Big Ten with five and the Big 12 with four.
With the selection of Thomas and Fleener, Stanford has had five players earn spots on NCAA-recognized All-America teams, which include the Walter Camp Football Foundation, American Football Coaches Association, Football Writers Association of America, Associated Press, along with Sporting News.
It's the most All-America selections ever turned out by the Stanford program in one season, topping the 1973 squad, which produced four All-Americans in Mike Boryla, Pat Donovan, Rod Garcia and Roger Stillwell.
By being named to the Sporting News squad, DeCastro has earned the distinction of being a unanimous All-America selection, having already landed spots on the Walter Camp, AFCA, FWAA and AP squads. He is Stanford's second unanimous All-American in the past three years, following Toby Gerhart in 2009.
Fleener is the second tight end in Stanford history, the first since Chris Burford in 1959, to earn All-America recognition. The fifth-year senior grabbed 32 passes for 648 yards and a team-high 10 touchdowns, which topped all FBS tight ends. He averaged 20.2 yards per catch, which currently ranks second on Stanford's all-time single season list. His 18 career touchdowns rank fifth all-time.
Thomas finished fourth on the team in total tackles with 51 and led the Pac-12 in tackles-for-loss per game (1.46; 73 total) and finished second in sacks-per-game (0.71; 8.5 total). He was also credited with five forced fumbles, which ranked second in the conference and tied for eighth nationally.
Thomas keyed a defensive unit that led the Pac-12 in five categories while ranking second in three others. He is the first Stanford linebacker to earn All-America honors since Ron George in 1992.
Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback Robert Griffin III of Baylor was named Sporting News Player of the Year.