The awards keep coming for LSU football standouts.
Three members of the Tigers defense — cornerbacks Tyrann Mathieu and Morris Claiborne and defensive end Sam Montgomery — were named to the Football Writers Association of America’s 68th annual All-America team, the organization announced Saturday.
The announcement capped another big night for Mathieu, who was in New York for the Heisman Trophy presentation.
Mathieu, a New Orleans native, finished fifth in the voting for college football’s most prestigious award, which went to Baylor quarterback Robert Griffin III.
Mathieu, a sophomore, led LSU with 70 tackles and scored four touchdowns — two of them as a kick returner.
Claiborne, a Shreveport native, has 46 tackles and ranks him ninth nationally with six interceptions. Claiborne, a junior, also has two touchdowns this season — a momentum-changing 99-yard kickoff return at West Virginia and a 45-yard interception return that put the finishing touches on LSU’s 42-10 win over Georgia in the Southeastern Conference Championship Game.
This is the second All-America team to which Claiborne has been named.
He also landed on the American Football Coaches Association team last week.
On Thursday, Mathieu won the Chuck Bednarik Award, given to college football’s top defensive player, while Claiborne captured the Jim Thorpe Award, given to the best defensive back in college football. Former LSU star Patrick Peterson, now with the Arizona Cardinals, won both those awards last season.
Montgomery, a sophomore from Greenwood, S.C., had 44 tackles, including 13 tackles for loss and a team-high nine sacks.
LSU and Oklahoma State each placed three players on the All-America team, but both were outdone by No. 2 Alabama, which had five All-Americans: junior tailback Trent Richardson, junior offensive lineman Barrett Jones, senior linebacker Courtney Upshaw, senior safety Mark Barron and junior cornerback Dre Kirkpatrick.
The Crimson Tide, of course, will face LSU on Jan. 9 in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome for the BCS national championship. LSU won the first matchup of the teams 9-6 in overtime on Nov. 3 in Tuscaloosa, Ala.
A total of 10 SEC players made the All-America team — twice as many as the Big Ten, the conference with the second-highest total.
Other SEC players include Arkansas return specialist Joe Adams and Georgia linebacker Jarvis Jones.