Forbes Picks Up Second Freshman All-America Honor

Published 12:04 pm Monday, January 18, 2021

STARKVILLE – Mississippi State’s standout defensive back Emmanuel Forbes has earned his second Freshman All-America honor, as one of nine true freshmen tabbed to the Football Writers’ Association of America’s defensive team.

Forbes and Jaden Walley both earned postseason honors in 2020, after Walley was named a second-team Freshman All-American by The Athletic. It marks the first time in program history that multiple MSU freshmen have earned Freshman All-American accolades in the same season.

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Forbes joins Martin Emerson as the last two Bulldogs to earn rookie All-American distinction at defensive back and his selection gives MSU seven total since 2012. That list includes three current student-athletes: Forbes, Walley and Emerson along with Jace Christmann (2016) and Leo Lewis (2016) and NFL All-Pro selections Benardrick McKinney (2012) and Chris Jones (2013).

The Grenada, Mississippi, native is already tied for the Bulldogs’ career record with three interception return touchdowns. He led the SEC with five interceptions in 11 games in 2020, which ranked third in the FBS. He closed the season as the SEC’s active career leader in defensive touchdowns.

Forbes is the first Bulldog with five or more interceptions in a season since Mark McLaurin tied the school record with six in 2017 and became the first MSU defender with two interceptions in a game since McLaurin had three in the 2017 TaxSlayer Bowl.

Forbes picked off Missouri quarterback Connor Bazelak twice in the regular season finale, returning one 29 yards for a touchdown. He also picked off Texas A&M’s Kellen Mond and raced 60 yards for a score. In State’s bowl game he took a pick back 90 yards for a touchdown, which is tied for the sixth-longest interception return in school history with Anthony Derricks’ 90-yard return against Auburn on Nov. 1, 1997. He is the first MSU defender with multiple interception returns for a touchdown since Corey Broomfield (2) in 2009.

For the season, Forbes finished with 44 tackles, five interceptions, six pass breakups and 0.5 tackles for loss. He piled up a season-best eight stops against Auburn and totaled seven tackles versus Missouri to close out the SEC schedule. His 701 defensive snaps played ranked fourth nationally among true freshmen defenders.

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FWAA Freshman All-America Team

Offense (13)

QB Grayson McCall, Coastal Carolina

QB Spencer Rattler, Oklahoma

RB Ulysses Bentley IV, SMU

RB Kyren Williams, Notre Dame

WR Kayshon Boutte, LSU*

WR Marvin Mims, Oklahoma*

WR Tahj Washington, Memphis

OL Matt Goncalves, Pitt

OL Jeremy James, Ole Miss

OL Willie Lampkin, Coastal Carolina*

OL Warren McClendon, Georgia

OL Peter Skoronski, Northwestern*

OL Tyler Smith, Tulsa

Defense (14)

DL Ricky Barber, WKU

DL Khari Coleman, TCU*

DL Calijah Kancey, Pitt

DL Myles Murphy, Clemson*

LB Will Anderson Jr., Alabama*

LB Tyler Grubbs, Louisiana Tech*

LB Noah Sewell, Oregon*

LB Stefon Thompson, Syracuse*

DB Derrick Canteen, Georgia Southern

DB Jalen Catalon, Arkansas

DB Emmanuel Forbes, Mississippi State*

DB Brandon Joseph, Northwestern

DB Malachi Moore, Alabama*

DB Eli Ricks, LSU*

Specialists (5)

K John Hoyland, Wyoming*

P Tory Taylor, Iowa*

KR Trayvon Rudolph, NIU*

PR Demario Douglas, Liberty

AP Deuce Vaughn, Kansas State*


Karl Dorrell, Colorado

* Denotes true freshman