Joe Harasymiak, coach of the University of Maine football team, was named the Colonial Athletic Association’s Coach of the Year on Tuesday.

Eleven Maine players received league honors, including four – three on defense – who earned CAA first-team honors: junior kick returner Earnest Edwards, junior defensive lineman Kayon Whitaker, senior linebacker Sterling Sheffield and junior cornerback Manny Patterson.

Harasymiak, in his third season as head coach, guided the Black Bears to an 8-3 record, 7-1 in the CAA. Maine won the CAA championship, its first since 2013, and is seeded seventh for the FCS playoffs. On Monday, Harasymiak was named as one of 15 finalists for the STATS Eddie Robinson Award, given to the national coach of the year in the FCS.

Edwards, also a second-team pick as a wide receiver, scored 10 touchdowns, including two kick returns for touchdowns in Maine’s 27-26 win over Elon last Saturday – the first player in Maine history to accomplish that feat. Edwards averaged 28.4 yards per kick return this year. As a receiver, he led Maine in catches (43), yards (673) and touchdowns (seven).

Whitaker had 38 tackles, 7.5 sacks, 9.5 tackles for a loss and a forced fumble. Sheffield made 69 tackles with 13.5 tackles for a loss and 8.5 sacks. He also had six pass breakups, two fumble recoveries, two forced fumbles and an interception. Patterson led the CAA in pass breakups with 20. He had 33 tackles and one interception.

CAA second team picks were senior tight end Drew Belcher, sophomore guard Liam Dobson, junior defensive lineman Charles Mitchell, sophomore linebacker Deshawn Stevens and senior special teams player Mozai Nelson.

Senior wide receiver Micah Wright and senior tackle Cody Levy were named to the third team.

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