NORFOLK, Va. (Release via ODU Athletics) – Four Old Dominion football players were named to the Pro Football Network Preseason College Football All-American Team. Ali Jennings III and Zack Kuntz were named to the third team, while Blake Watson and LaMareon James received honorable mention recognition.
Kuntz finished second in the country in receptions by a tight end last season with 73, he recorded 692 yards and five touchdowns. He ranked ninth in the country in receiving yards and in touchdowns among tight ends.
A native of Camp Hill Pennsylvania, Kuntz had at least two catches in every game and had five contests of eight receptions or more. He caught a career-best nine passes in a game twice, registering nine grabs for 119 yards and a touchdown against WKU and catching nine passes for 102 yards and a TD in the win at FIU.
Jennings caught 62 passes for a team-high 1,066 yards and team-high tying five touchdowns. His 17.2 yards per catch average was the fifth best average in ODU history.
A native of Richmond, Virginia, Jennings caught nine passes for 252 yards and three touchdowns in the regular season finale victory over Charlotte. The 252 yards was the most by an ODU receiver in FBS games. He recorded three, 100-yard receiving games last season.
In 2021, Watson became the first Monarch since Ray Lawry in 2016 to rush for more than 1,000 yards in a season, as he registered 1,112 yards on a school record 215 carries and had eight rushing touchdowns. He also caught 10 passes for 55 yards and a touchdown. Watson came to ODU in 2018 as a wide receiver and redshirted, and moved to running back midway through the 2019 season.
A native of Queens, New York, Watson set an ODU record with five-straight 100-yard rushing games and notched six 100-yard games on the year. He recorded a season-high 168 yards on 26 attempts against Marshall.
James finished ninth in the country last season with a 29.4-yard kick return average and a pair of touchdowns. He returned his first touchdown of the season against Louisiana Tech with his second coming in the Myrtle Beach Bowl against Tulsa. Both of his returns went for 100 yards.