McDonald is NCAA D2 Academic All-American

McDonald is NCAA D2 Academic All-American


WEST LIBERTY, W.Va. – West Liberty University senior linebacker Clay McDonald is the latest Hilltopper to earn NCAA Division II Academic All-America® honors for the 2020-21 academic year. The Valley Grove, W.Va. native was a second-team selection when the 2021 Academic All-America® Football Team was announced on Tuesday afternoon.

   Selected by the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA), the 2021 Academic All-America® Teams recognize the nation’s top student-athletes for their impressive accomplishments on the field and in the classroom.

   A 6-3, 235-pounder from Wheeling Park High School, McDonald checked off all the boxes on both sides of that ledger as he closed out his West Liberty career in style during the abbreviated spring season.

   The Hilltopper veteran was a team captain and back-to-back All-Mountain East Conference selection as one of the team’s leading tacklers from his inside linebacker spot. He started all four games this spring and ranked second on the team with 25 tackles, highlighted by a program-high 11 stops against Wheeling.

   His academic accomplishments were even more impressive. McDonald had the honor of carrying the College of Business banner at commencement as the graduate with the GPA in the College. Twice voted West Liberty’s Outstanding Management Student as an undergraduate, he currently maintains a perfect 4.00 GPA as a graduate student working toward his Master’s in Business Administration on the hilltop.

   McDonald is West Liberty’s second NCAA Division II Academic All-American of the 2020-21 academic year, joining 2021 NCAA Division II Men’s Basketball National Academic All-American of the Year Dalton Bolon. The Hilltopper athletic department has produced at least one Academic All-American in each of the last nine years and earned a total of 18 Academic All-America Awards since transitioning to NCAA Division II membership during the mid-1990s.


CoSIDA 2021 Academic All-America Team

NCAA Division II



Pos. Name                                     School                               Yr.            GPA                  Major

QB   Evan Ernst                              Ohio Dominican               Sr.            4.00                  Finance

RB   Brandon Blair                        West Texas A&M             Sr.            4.00                  Biology

RB   Andrew Brazicki                   Bentley                              Sr.            3.70                  Corporate Finance & Accounting

WR  Henry Litwin                          Slippery Rock                   Gr.            3.66/4.00        Safety Management (UG)/MBA (G)

WR  Konnor Maloney                  Hillsdale                             Sr.            3.72                  Exercise Science

TE    Preston Guerra                     Colorado State-Pueblo   Sr.            3.94                  Business Management

OL   Derek Ivey                             Stonehill                            Sr.            3.94                  Economics

OL   Lane Potter                           Wayne State (Mich.)       Gr.            3.83/3.60        Global Supply Chain Mgmt. (UG)/MBA (G)

OL   Andrew Strickland               Wingate                             Gr.            3.81/3.88        Accounting (G)

OL   Austin Wayt                          Slippery Rock                   Gr.            3.50/4.00        Safety Management (UG)/MBA (G)

OL   Madison Wrather                Northeastern State         Sr.            4.00                  Cellular & Microbiology/Business

K      Tanner Harding                    Notre Dame (Ohio)         Sr.            3.91                  Psychology


Pos. Name                                     School                               Yr.            GPA                  Major

DL   Alexander Findura                Bloomsburg                      Sr.            3.59                  Business Management

DL   Patrick McMahon                Davenport                         Sr.            4.00                  Accounting

DL   Ricky Robinson                     Shepherd                           Gr.            3.88/4.00        Business Administration (UG)/MBA (G)

DL   JT Turner                                Concord                             Sr.            3.94                  Business Administration

LB    Jackson Cauthen                  Tusculum                           Sr.            3.95                  Nursing

LB    Jace McDown                       Emporia State                  Sr.            3.99                  Health & Human Performance

LB    Nathan Moore                      Notre Dame (Ohio)         Jr.             3.96                  Management

DB   Alexander Anschutz             Hillsdale                             Sr.            3.86                  Biochemistry

DB   Brock Floyd                            Southern Arkansas          Jr.             3.77                  Business Administration/Management

DB   Alex Shillow                           Texas A&M-Commerce  Gr.            3.85/3.75        Sports & Rec Management (UG)/MBA (G)

DB   Eli Weber                               Augustana                         Jr.             3.67                  Nursing

P      Lane Spiker                            Washburn                          Sr.            3.70                  Health Services Administration

ST    Max Drinon                           Bentley                              Sr.            3.56                  Supply Chain Management

ST    Tucker Mullis                         Wingate                             Sr.            3.82                  Management



Pos. Name                                     School                               Yr.            GPA                  Major

QB   Grayson Willingham            Lenoir-Rhyne                    Gr.            3.75/3.80        Business Administration

RB   Toriano Clinton                     Indianapolis                      Jr.             3.42                  Sport Management

RB   Payton McAlister                  Missouri S&T                    Jr.             3.41                  Civil Engineering

WR  Logan Bolin                           Ashland                              Gr.            3.60/3.75        Finance/MBA

WR  Cole Thurness                       Chadron State                  Gr.            3.37/4.00        Organizational Management

TE    Jordan Smith                         Gannon                              Sr.            4.00                  Biomedical Engineering

OL   Demetrius Blackwell           Catawba                            Sr.            3.65                  Business Administration

OL   Eric Hudanick                        California (Pa.)                 Gr.            3.51/3.77        Business Administration

OL   Cole Johnson                         Hillsdale                             Sr.            3.83                  Financial Management

OL   Gavin Posey                          Ashland                              Jr.             3.88                  Accounting

OL   Kyle Urich                              Missouri S&T                    Jr.             3.81                  Mechanical Engineering

K      Chase Allbaugh                     Lenoir-Rhyne                    Sr.            3.68                  Business Management & Marketing


Pos. Name                                     School                               Yr.            GPA                  Major

DL   Shawn Aarhus                       Concordia-St. Paul           Jr.             3.75                  Health & Physical Education

DL   Zach Howard                         NW Missouri State          So.           3.51                  Physical Education

DL   Karron Jeter                          Winston-Salem State      Sr.            3.52                  Exercise Science

DL   Luc Leszczynski                     Winona State                   Sr.            3.72        Economics/Finance

LB    Jackson Barnes                     NW Missouri State          Jr.             3.96        Chemistry/Medicinal Chemistry

LB    CLAY McDONALD                WEST LIBERTY                 GR.          3.84/4.00        BUSINESS MANAGEMENT (UG)/MBA (G)

LB    Dalton Smerchek                  Concordia-St. Paul           Sr.            3.97                  Exercise Science

DB   Luke Fritsch                           Augustana                         Sr.            3.81                  Biology

DB   John Merica                          W.Va. Wesleyan              Jr.             3.76                  Accounting

DB   Dominique Ramsey             Texas A&M-Commerce  Sr.            3.43                  Industrial Engineering

DB   Connor Steeb                        Indianapolis                      Gr.            3.53/3.80        MBA

P      Andrew Cantrell                   Tusculum                           Jr.             3.64                  Chemistry & Pre-Pharmacy

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