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Posts Tagged ‘Steve Wirkus.’

UD’s Wirkus named first team Capital One Academic All-America


University of Dayton redshirt senior safety Steve Wirkus has been named a University Division Capital One First Team Academic All-American.

Steve Wirkus



Wirkus, an Accounting major, led the Pioneer Football League in interceptions per game (0.5).  Despite missing three games with injuries, he led UD in solo tackles (37), and was second on the team in passes broken up (7).  He was also second on the team in tackles per game (6.8).  Injuries caused him to miss all or a part of three of UD’s four losses in the Pioneer Football League.

The Dayton football program has produced 22 Academic All-Americans since the 2000 season. That’s the most by any school at any level of college football, and includes the 2007 Division I ESPN The Magazine All-American of the Year, Brandon Cramer.
In the history of the Academic All-America program, UD football has had 52 Academic All-Americans. Among schools currently playing Division I football, only Nebraska (101), Penn State (59) and Notre Dame (55) have had more. UD has had at least one football player named an Academic All-American in 25 of the last 27 years.  In all sports, Dayton has had at least one Academic All-American for 28 straight years.

To be eligible for Academic All-America® consideration, a student-athlete must be a varsity starter or key reserve, maintain a cumulative G.P.A. of 3.30 on a scale of 4.00, have reached sophomore athletic and academic standings at his/her current institution and be nominated by his/her sports information director.

Since the program’s inception in 1952, CoSIDA has bestowed Academic All-America honors on more than 14,000 student-athletes in Divisions I, II, III and NAIA, covering all NCAA championship sports.  For more information about the Academic All-America® Teams program, please visit
Press Release & Photo courtesy of Dayton media relations

UD’s Wirkus named Pioneer Football League Defensive Player of the Week


Steve Wirkus with his second half interception against Marist (courtesy of UD athletics)

Dayton Flyers redshirt senior safety Steve Wirkus is having a good season after three games and he was rewarded for it by the Pioneer Football League. Especially for his performance this past weekend.

Wirkus has been named the PFL Defensive Player of the Week for his role in Dayton’s 24-10 league opening win over Marist on Saturday.

Wirkus intercepted two passes, batted down two more and was in on six tackles (four solo). His big plays came at critical times in the game. His first pass deflection on a third down in the second quarter forced Marist to settle for a field goal which opened the scoring in the game. His second interception was on the Red Foxes’ first offensive play of the second half, setting up Dayton’s third touchdown that made it a two-score game. And he knocked down a pass on 4th-and -4 at the Dayton 18-yard-line, ending Marist’s final scoring threat of the game late in the third quarter.

The Flyers edged Marist in last season’s finale to win their 11th PFL title in the 18 years since the league began.

Wirkus, a Brecksville-Broadview Heights High School graduate, has had an interception in every game and leads FCS football in picks per game (4). The first-year starter also leads Dayton in tackles (23), solo hits (14) and passes batted away (3, tied with Howard Savage).

This Saturday, Wirkus will lead the Flyers on a short trip to Wilberforce, Ohio to play the Central State Marauders. Game time at McPherson Stadium is 1:30 p.m. ET.

Info courtesy of  Dayton athletics

Two interceptions by Wirkus fuels Dayton to 24-10 PFL win over Marist


The University of Dayton Flyers football team took control in the second half to defeat the Marist Red Foxes 24-10 Saturday at Welcome Stadium. The game was the Pioneer Football League opener for both teams. The win was the Flyers 11th straight in league play.

After Marist scored with 22 seconds to go in the first half to make the halftime score 14-10, UD answered with 10 points and outgained Marist 191-74 in the second half.

QB Zach Splain

The Flyers used two quarterbacks in the game, Zach Splain and Will Bardo.

Splain was 11 of 18 passing for 161 yards and two touchdowns. Bardo opened the game going 8 for 14 for 72 yards and an interception, giving both QB’s 19-for-32 day, with 233 yards passing. Luke Bellman caught six passes for 121 yards.

Marist quarterback Chuckie Looney was 20 for 35 passing for 225 yards, but the Red Foxes could not rush the ball and ended up with 41 net rushing yards.

On the defensive side for the Flyers, Senior safety Ben Welsh, playing in his first game in nearly two years due to injuries, led UD with nine tackles (six solo) and a pass break up to go along with his big play to cause and recover a fumble.

Steve Wirkus had two interceptions (3rd & 4th of the season), two critical pass deflections and six hits.

Safety Ben Welsh

The Flyers came into the game tied for first in FCS football in sacks with 5.5 per game, added two more, one each by Phil DeBoer and Zach Weber.

Dayton ups its record to 2-1 and Marist drops to 1-2.

Info & photos courtesy of Dayton athletics

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Duquesne Dukes beats Dayton for 2nd straight year; Flyers top FCS streak stopped at 10


(courtesy of Duquesne University via wikipedia commons)

The University of Dayton’s nation’s longest FCS winning streak has come to an end.

Last week in the Flyers’ home opener against the Duquesne Dukes at Welcome Stadium in Dayton, the boys from Pittsburgh won 22-13.

Dayton had won 10 straight games, with their last loss to the Dukes in 2010.

The Dukes special team’s play was the difference in the game. Duquesne blocked two Flyer field goal attempts, and made three of their own returned one for a touchdown.

The Dukes outgained the Flyers 452-344.

UD sacked Dukes’ quarterback Sean Patterson three times, including two by defensive tackle Brannon Dunn.

Other defensive leaders were Steve Wirkus with an interception, Howard Savage with three passes broken up.

Info courtesy of Dayton athletics

Dayton Flyers use eight sacks to win at Robert Morris

Steve Wirkus

Will Bardo

The University of Dayton Flyers football team extended its winning streak to 10 games over two seasons as they pulled out a hard-fought 19-13 win at Moon Township, Pennsylvania beating Robert Morris College in the season opener for both teams.

That streak is the longest active streak in NCAA’s Football Championship Subdivision after FCS defending champion Eastern Washington lost at Washington 30-27 in its opening game.

Dayton’s defense made the difference in the game, forcing two turnovers and sacking Robert Morris quarterback Jeff Sinclair eight times. Seven different Dayton players were in on the sacks, led by Devon Langhorst’s 2.5.

Will Bardo, a redshirt freshman playing in his first game and first start ever, was 14 of 24 for 180 yards and two touchdowns.

Safety Steve Wirkus led the Flyer defensive unit with nine hits, including seven solo tackles. His acrobatic interception late in the first half set up UD’s go-ahead touchdown, and he also was responsible for batting down a pass at the goal line that prevented Robert Morris from scoring on its final possession of the third quarter.

Info & photos courtesy of Dayton athletics