Nashville, Tenn. - In what could be the first of several preseason honors, Tennessee State University defensive back Eugene Clifford has been selected to both the 2010 Consensus Draft Services (CDS) 7th annual Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) and HBCU Preseason All-America teams.
The senior, Cincinnati, Ohio native, was selected to the CDS HBCU defensive first team while joining 13 other Ohio Valley Conference (OVC) football players on the FCS squad as a second team defense selection.
Clifford's recognition on both CDS All-America teams continue after receiving CDS FCS preseason honorable mention and CDS HBCU first-team recognition in 2008 and 2009. He then garnered post-selections after the seasons with honorable mentions on the FCS teams and a first team selection on the HBCU squads. In addition, he was given honorable mention on the 2009 Boxtorow.com/BASN National Champion All-America team.
Last year, Clifford was named to the OVC first team finishing the season as TSU's third leading tackler. He was credited with 60 stops (34 solo); two fumble recoveries, two interceptions with seven pass deflections including five break-ups.
Clifford tacked on two scores returning one from a 69-yard interception return and the other courtesy of a 78-yard fumble recovery. The score from the fumble is the longest in modern TSU football history.
In 2009, he was named to the preseason All-OVC team and tacked on first team honors at the end year. At the conclusion of the 2008 season, he was selected to the second team and All-Newcomer squad. In his first year, Clifford received the OVC Defensive Player of the Week on October 5, 2008.
After transferring from Ohio State, Clifford's impressive stats in two seasons include 121 tackles (76 solo, 45 assists), five interceptions for 150 yards and three touchdowns.
The Tigers begin the 2010 season when they host Alabama A&M in 12th Annual John Merritt Classic on September 4th at LP Field.