Venric Mark

Northwestern's Venric Mark. (Rick Osentoski-US PRESSWIRE / December 14, 2012)

The Football Writers Association of America has named Northwestern’s Venric Mark to its All-America team as a punt returner.

Mark is the 39th player in program history to be named a first-team All-American and is the lone representative from the Big Ten on the 69th FWAA All-America squad.

His 20.1 yards per punt return (on 14 attempts) was nearly four yards better than his closest competitor. He became the second NU player -- and the first since 1949 -- to record two punt returns for scores in the same season – an 82-yarder at Syracuse and a 75-yard score at Penn State.

The standout running back (1,310 yards), kick returner (355) and punt returner (282) ranked ninth in the country with 171.7 all-purpose yards per contest. He enters the Jan. 1 Gator Bowl needing 148 all-purpose yards to break NU’s single-season record (2,195) set in 2000 by Damien Anderson, who that season also earned first-team All-America distinction as a running back.

Here is the entire team:


QB Johnny Manziel, Texas A&M (6-1, 200, Fr., Kerrville, Texas) 
RB Kenjon Barner, Oregon (5-11, 192, Sr., Riverside, Calif.) 
RB Jonathan Franklin, UCLA (5-11, 195, Sr., Los Angeles, Calif.) 
WR Stedman Bailey, West Virginia (5-10, 195, Jr., Miami, Fla.) 
WR Marqise Lee, USC (6-0, 195, So., Inglewood, Calif.) 
WR Terrance Williams, Baylor (6-2, 205, Sr., Dallas, Texas) 
OL Jonathan Cooper, North Carolina (6-3, 295, Sr., Wilmington, N.C.) 
OL Luke Joeckel, Texas A&M (6-6, 310, Jr., Arlington, Texas) 
OL Jake Matthews, Texas A&M (6-5, 305, Jr., Missouri City, Texas) 
OL Chance Warmack, Alabama (6-3, 320, Sr., Atlanta, Ga.)  C Barrett Jones, Alabama (6-5, 302, Sr., Germantown, Tenn.)


DL Jadeveon Clowney, South Carolina (6-6, 256, So., Rock Hill, S.C.)