From the AP:
Benn Earns Preseason All-America Honors
Williams and Hoomanawanui Land on Honorable Mention Lists
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. – University of Illinois gridders, Arrelious Benn, Juice Williams and Michael Hoomanawanui have been named to NationalChamps.net’s preseason All-America list. Benn landed on the third team at wide receiver, while Williams and Michael Hoomanwanui garnered honorable mention status. NationalChamps.net has officially released its College Football Preview for the upcoming 2009 season, including their Top 25 Heisman Candidates as well as the list of Preseason All-Americans. The online preview is free to the public. Heisman voter Todd Helmick also placed Williams on his preseason list of Heisman Candidates.
Benn has been named the preseason No. 38 player nationally by Scout.com, following a 2008 season where he earned first-team All-Big Ten honors and fourth-team All-America accolades. He was the team’s Most Valuable Player after posting 1,055 receiving yards last season, recording five 100-yard games and averaging 15.7 yards per catch.
Williams is ranked this preseason as the No. 35 player in the nation by Scout.com, after a junior season in which he led the Big Ten in passing and total offense. He earned second-team All-Big Ten honors and broke three stadium records for total offense in a game. Under Williams, Illinois has three times finished in the top-20 nationally in total offense. Heading into the 2009 season, Williams is on pace to break Illinois’ career marks for passing and total offense and finish among the top-3 in school history in rushing.
Hoomanwanui is in his third year as a starter at tight end and has pulled in 28 catches in the last two seasons. The 6-5 target has been a favorite of Williams and helped the Illini average nearly 270 passing yards per game.