From UAB Sports Information:
UAB running back Jordan Howard, along with kicker Ty Long and punter Hunter Mullins, have each been named to Athlon Sports' 2014 Preseason All-Conference USA First Team, headlining a group of six Blazers who were honored by the preseason magazine.
Athlon Sports tabbed Howard as a preseason first-team offense selection, while Long and Mullins were each named first-team specialists.
Howard enters his second season at UAB following a freshman campaign in which he totaled 881 rushing yards and a team-best 6.1 yards per carry.
Long will begin his final season as a Blazer with 46 career field goals, ranking No. 3 all-time at UAB, while Mullins has a career average of 44 yards per punt and will be in his third season as the Blazers' regular punter.
Joining Howard, Long and Mullins is UAB wide receiver Jamarcus Nelson, who was named second-team offense, while defensive end Diaheem Watkins was a second-team defense pick and linebacker Jake Ganus placed on the third-team defense.
Nelson has totaled 81 career catches for the Blazers and averages 20 yards per reception in his career. Ganus enters his junior year after leading the team in tackles last season with 93 total stops, while Watkins finished fifth on the team in tackles with 37 last season.
The Blazers will open their 2014 season on Saturday, Aug. 30, when they take on the Troy Trojans at Legion Field. Game time is set for 11 a.m. CT with the contest scheduled to be televised by FOX College Sports.