By Tim Glon
| All-Tazon Team |
ADA — Former Ohio Northern All-Americans Wes Hostetler and Jason Trusnik were named to the 20-Year All-Tazon Team for their efforts representing the United States of America and Ohio Northern in bowl games against Mexican all-stars from 1997-2016.
The All-Tazon Team was selected as part of the 20-year anniversary of the Tazon de Estrellas (Bowl of Stars) from 2009-16 and its predecessor the Aztec Bowl (1996-2007).
The Americans hold a 14-5 advantage of the Mexicans in the previous 19 games.
Ohio Northern has had an impressive 25 players represent Team USA and Team Stars and Stripes over the past 19 years.
Hostetler was a First Team All-American and Second Team Academic All-American 2005.
He was also the MVP of the 2005 Aztec Bowl, leading Team USA to a 53-15 victory over Mexico in Toluca, Mexico.
He set Aztec Bowl records (that still stand) with 3 TDs, 18 points scored and 229 all-purpose yards. Hostetler returned a punt, a kickoff and an interception for touchdowns in the contest.
He then went on to be the first ONU player to participate in the Hula Bowl in Honolulu, Hawaii, and was televised nationally on ESPN.
He currently ranks third on ONU's all-time career lists with 51 punt returns for 645 yards and two touchdowns.
Trusnik was a First Team All-America in 2004 and again in 2006.
He was also a captain of Team USA at the 2006 Aztec Bowl, leading Team USA to a 28-7 victory over Mexico in Aguascalientes, Mexico.
Trusnik then went on to be the first ONU player to participate in the Texas vs. The Nation Bowl in El Paso, Tex. on ESPN.
He then spent 10 seasons in the National Football League, playing for the New York Jets, the Cleveland Browns, the Miami Dolphins, the Minnesota Vikings and the New Orleans Saints.
Trusnik led the nation in sacks (18.0) and tackles for loss (31.0) as a junior in 2004.
He remains ONU's all-time career leads with 43.0 sacks and 85.0 TFL and is seventh with 277 tackles.
The All-Tazón team was selected by a panel of veterans of the Tazón De Estrellas (Bowl of the Stars) and its Global Football-organized predecessor The Aztec Bowl, from games played between 1997 and 2016.
Players were chosen based on their on-field performances and the leadership qualities they displayed south of the border, by 20-year veterans of the event, Global Football President Patrick Steenberge and player personnel director John Roslien (Central College), and several coaches who have traveled as members of the Team Stars & Stripes staff during the past two decades.
Players were selected from Alfred (N.Y.), Augustana (Ill.), Baldwin-Wallace, Buena Vista (Iowa), Carnegie-Mellon (Pa.), Central (Iowa), Coe (Iowa), De Pauw (Ind.), Framingham State (, Grove City (Pa.), John Carroll, Lycoming (Pa.), North Central (Ill.), Ohio Northern, Otterbein, Pomona-Pitzer (Calif.), Tufts (Conn.), Wartburg (Iowa), Wisconsin-Stevens Point and Wisconsin-Stout.
The Polar Bears finished with a 7-3 record and were second in the OAC with a 6-3 mark in 2017 under 14th-year head coach Dean Paul.
ONU's second place finish clinched an upper division finish in the league for the 21st time in the past 22 seasons.