Tech's Tim Benford ranked among Top 10 FCS receivers for 2011

PHILADELPHIA, Pa. -- Tennessee Tech senior wide receiver Tim Benford, a three-time first-team all-OVC pass catcher for the Golden Eagles, has drawn quite a bit of attention as he races toward his final collegiate season. The 6-foot-1, 195-pound speedster has been named among the Top 10 receivers in the nation by Craig Haley, Executive Director of The Sports Network and one of the nation's authorities on the Football Championship Subdivision.

Heading into the 2011 season, Benford has numerous school records within his grasp and should once again be among the premier receivers in the Ohio Valley Conference.

Benford received the prestigious Robert Hill Johnson award for the second time in his decorated career following the 2010 season. A three-year starter for the Golden Eagles and a three-time all-OVC selection, Benford also received the Robert Hill Johnson Award following his freshman season in 2008.

Last year Benford led the team and ranked among OVC leaders with 50 catches for 812 yards and tied the school record with 10 touchdowns. His 812 yards ranks as the fourth-highest season in school history and his 50 receptions is the sixth-best season total. Benford was third in the OVC and 29th nationally in receiving yards per game, and sixth in the OVC in receptions per game. With 152 career catches, he is listed second all-time in the Tech record book, and his career yardage total of 2,174 ranks third all-time.

Benford is the only OVC receiver among the Top 10, while Eastern Kentucky's Orlandus Harris is listed among receivers "on the cusp" by Haley.

Here's what Haley wrote about Benford:

Tim Benford, Tennessee Tech, Sr., 6-1, 195 - It's dangerous to try to defend Benford with one-on-one coverage because he has big-play ability. Ten of his 50 receptions went for touchdowns last season, and he averaged over 16 yards per catch with 812 receiving yards. He enters his fourth season as a starter with 152 career receptions, including 22 touchdowns. Much of the Golden Eagles' offense revolves around getting the ball to Benford.

The other nine receivers listed by Haley in the Top 10 are:

Joel Bradford, Chattanooga, Sr., 6-0, 170
Brandon Kaufman, Eastern Washington, Jr., 6-5, 205
Aaron Mellette, Elon, Jr., 6-4, 212
Josh Philpart, Jacksonville, Sr., 6-1, 175
Brian Quick, Appalachian State, Sr., 6-5, 225
Cordell Roberson, Stephen F. Austin, Jr., 6-3, 192
Ryan Spadola, Lehigh, Jr., 6-3, 200
Chris Summers, Liberty, Sr., 6-4, 190
Norman White, Villanova, Sr., 6-3, 215

Receivers on the cusp: Gralyn Crawford, Stephen F. Austin, Jr., 5-10, 175; Orlandus Harris, Eastern Kentucky, Jr., 6-0, 185; Marcus Jackson, Lamar, Sr., 6-1, 195; Shadrae King, Robert Morris, TE, Sr., 6-3, 225; Simmie Yarborough, Southeastern Louisiana, Sr., 6-1, 210.

The story ranking the wide receivers is the seventh in an eight-part series by Haley ranking the top players at every position within the FCS. Read the entire story by clicking here

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