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Three Named Preseason Football All-Americans




Joe Deptula

Perry Laskaris

Joe Deptula

american football

Kevin Beattie, Associate Athletic Director

TROY, NY – 2022 Preseason All-America teams have been revealed and three Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI) student athletes are included, all defense graduate students. tackling noseJosh Cohen and corner back CJ Lyon garnered recognition for the first team while linebacker Joe Deptula was chosen for the third team.

A All-America Fourth Team pick in 2021, Cohen (Wellesley, MA/Wellesley) had 52 tackles, including 24 unassisted and six for yards lost (23), in 11 games last season. He registered three sacks (18 yards lost) and two forced fumbles to help the Engineers set a school record tying 11 wins (11-2) and the Elite 8 of the NCAA tournament. He had multiple tackles in 10 games, including two in which he made 10 stops. Cohen had five tackles in four other games, two of which came in the postseason. Of his six tackles for lost yards, four made it to the playoffs, as did two of his sacks.

After registering 11 tackles in his first four games, Cohen had 10 stops in consecutive games, starting with five solos and five assists in Hobart. He then had two unassisted tackles and eight assisted with a forced fumble in a win over Ithaca. He made five tackles (2 solos), including a three-meter sack, in St. Lawrence, and five more tackles (4 solos) with a forced fumble in the Dutchman Shoes Trophy Game victory at Union. Cohen had three solo tackles and two assists in both of Rensselaer’s last two games, adding a six-yard sack at Cortland in the NCAA second round, and two tackles for lost yards at North Central.

Lyons (Rocky Mount, NC/St. Stephens-St. Agnes), an All-America Third Team roster last year, played all 13 games, totaling 52 tackles, including 36 unassisted, which was second on the team. He had a team-high six pass breakups and tied Cohen for the team lead in forced fumbles with two. He had at least two tackles in 11 games with a season-high 10 and another game with eight stops, all solos. Lyons had two pass breakups in two different games, including in an NCAA First Round matchup in Endicott.

He started the year with six unassisted stops in a win over Montclair State when the defense didn’t allow points. He had a career-high 10 stops, including four unassisted and 0.5 for yards lost, with a pass breakup the next game (Stevenson) and then registered four tackles (3 solos) to help the Engineers beat WPI in the Transit Trophy Game. Lyons made four more tackles (3 solos) with two pass breakups and a forced fumble against Buffalo State in early October before making eight unassisted tackles with a pass breakup in a double overtime win over St. Lawrence a month later . He finished the campaign with five unassisted tackles in the NCAA quarterfinals in North Central.

Deptula (Watertown, CT/Watertown) had 72 tackles, finishing second to the Engineers. He had lost 31 unassisted, a team-high 11.5 for yards (35) and two sacks with 17 yards. His two fumbles led the team and he forced one turnover and broke two passes. Deptula had at least six tackles in eight games and one or more tackles for lost yards in six.

He registered seven tackles, including three unassisted and one for a four-yard loss, with a forced fumble and a broken pass against Montclair and then had a team season-high 13 tackles (1 solo) against Stevenson in Week 2. Deptula made seven solo tackles, including three for lost yards (12) and an 8-yard sack, with a broken pass at WPI and later recorded four unassisted tackles (5 total) and two for lost yards (10) with a 9-yard sack in the first round of the NCAA Playoffs.

He was named to the All-Liberty League First Team and the All-Region Third Team. Cohen and Lyons were also All-League First Team rosters as well as All-Region First Team members.

RPI, the No. 20 in the Preseason Poll, will play its first game on September 3 against Dickinson at East Campus Stadium (1:00 PM). Home games against Carnegie Mellon on September 10 (1pm) and WPI in the Transit Trophy Game on September 17 (5pm) will follow.




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