by Missouri State Athletics
Missouri State football standouts Jordan Murray (TE, Fr., Lee’s Summit, Mo.) and Matt McClellan (DL, Jr., Ferguson, Mo.) were honored by the Missouri Valley Football Conference on Tuesday with the league’s announcement of its All-Newcomer Team.
Murray was named to the All-MVFC Team as an honorable mention selection on Monday. He was one of the top true freshman performers in the league in 2018, hauling in 33 receptions for 378 yards and four touchdowns. His reception total was an MSU freshman record and helped him average 11.5 yards per catch. His 378 receiving yards ranked third in program history by a freshman. Murray also had a team-high six “money receptions” this season for first downs or touchdowns. His best effort was vs. Southern Illinois on Oct. 27 when he snagged seven receptions for 77 yards and a touchdown.
McClellan, a transfer from Kilgore (Texas) College, had team high 10.5 tackles for loss and shared the MSU team lead with 6.0 sacks during his first campaign in Springfield. He ranks 71st nationally with 0.55 sacks per game which is eighth in MVFC. During the season, he posted two sacks at South Dakota as part of a five-tackle performance on Oct. 6. He later notched 1.5 tackles for loss in the team’s win over No. 20 Northern Arizona (Sept. 15) and in the team’s home win over No. 9 Illinois State (Sept. 29). McClellan also had four QB hurries in the Illinois State game and was in on at least one sack in his first six games at MSU.
In the history of the Gateway / Missouri Valley Football Conference, only Western Illinois has had more All-Newcomer Team selections than Missouri State.
On Monday, offensive lineman Marquis Prophete (Sr., Florissant, Mo.) earned All-MVFC second-team distinction, while Murray, linebacker Angelo Garbutt (Jr., Carrollton, Texas), linebacker McNeece Egbim (Jr., Rowlett, Texas) and wide receiver Tyler Currie (Jr., Cordova, Tenn.) were named honorable mention honorees.
Coach Dave Steckel‘s Bears finished his fourth season with a 4-7 overall record and 2-6 ledger in MVFC play. The Bears’ season was highlighted by a 4-2 start that included back-to-back wins over ranked opponents for the first time since 1989. MSU was also ranked in the Division FCS Top 25 on Oct. 1, spending a week at No. 24 in the STATS poll.