DENTON, Texas - Four North Texas football players earned first-team All-Sun Belt Conference honors, the league announced today. Senior linebacker Craig Robertson, senior offensive linemen Victor Gill and Esteban Santiago, along with junior running back Lance Dunbar were all named to the list following a vote of Sun Belt head coaches and media.
Only Sun Belt Conference regular-season champion Florida International had more players named to the first team with six. This is also the most players North Texas has placed on the Sun Belt first team since 2004 when it had seven.
True freshman kicker Zach Olen earned second-team honors, while fellow freshman Brelan Chancellor was an honorable mention selection.
Robertson was a candidate for Sun Belt Defensive Player of the Year after leading the league in tackles with a career-high 133. It was the third-highest, single-season tackle total in both North Texas and Sun Belt Conference history. He finished the season ranked eighth nationally in tackles and finished his illustrious North Texas career as the school's third all-time leader in total tackles with 382. Robertson fell short in the Defensive Player of the Year voting to Middle Tennessee defensive end Jamari Lattimore.
This was Dunbar's second straight year to be named first team all-conference. He was a strong candidate for Sun Belt Offensive Player of the Year after finishing No. 5 in the nation in rushing and leading the conference in scoring with 16 touchdowns. Dunbar's 1,553 yards rushing was the third-highest total in North Texas history and the fifth-highest in Sun Belt Conference history. He was one of only two players in the nation to rush for over 215 yards three times. His average of 5.7 yards per carry also led the Sun Belt for backs with at least 100 carries. He ranks in the top four in every North Texas career rushing record and will return next season as one of the top five active rushers in the NCAA.
Gill and Santiago were a big part of the success that Dunbar and the Mean Green offense enjoyed in 2010. Gill was a three-year starter at left tackle and team captain as a senior when he helped pave the way for Dunbar's success. Santiago led the team with 47 career starts, moving from tackle to guard in 2010 and helped guide an offensive line that saw three different starters suffer season-ending injuries. The two helped North Texas go over 4,000 yards in total offense in each of the last four years, a feat which has never been accomplished in school history.
Olen took over kicking duties four games into the season and ended up leading the conference in field goal percentage (86.7) and field goals made (1.44 per game). Chancellor also came onto the scene midway through the year, but ended as the Sun Belt's top kickoff return guy with an average of 28.0 yards per attempt. Chancellor was also the only league player to return two kickoffs for touchdowns this season.
North Texas finished the season with a 3-9 record, including a 3-5 record in Sun Belt Conference play.