Nov. 10, 2008
WACO, Texas — Baylor junior linebacker Joe Pawelek was named first-team ESPN The Magazine Academic All-District VI, the College Sports Information Directors of America announced recently. Pawelek, a product of Smithson Valley High School in Spring Branch, Texas, earned academic all-district honors for the second consecutive season. He now is eligible for Academic All-America honors; that team is announced in late November.
This is the sixth consecutive season in which Baylor has produced an academic all-district honoree and the fifth time in the last six years that the Bears have produced a first-team selection. Daniel Sepulveda was a second-team selection as a sophomore in 2004 and earned first-team honors during his junior (2005) and senior (2006) seasons. In 2003, John Martin was a first-team pick, while Stephen Sepulveda was named second-team.
Pawelek ranks third nationally and leads the Big 12 Conference with 11.4 tackles per game. He has recorded 10-plus tackles in eight of 10 games this season, registering at least seven in each game. Pawelek also is tied for third in the Big 12 and 24th nationally with 0.4 interceptions per game. He and Iowa’s Pat Angerer lead all Bowl Subdivision linebackers in interceptions (four).
An All-America candidate, Pawelek has 114 tackles this season. He is the first Baylor linebacker with at least 100 tackles in a season since Dean Jackson had 114 in 1996. Pawelek needs 11 tackles to crack Baylor’s single-season top 10 list and 10 tackles to reach 300 stops for his career.
Baylor returns to action Saturday, hosting Texas A&M for the 105th rendition of the Battle of the Brazos. Kickoff is scheduled for 3:05 p.m. CST at Floyd Casey Stadium.