McMillian earns FWAA second-team All-America honors, becomes fifth ECU player to get recognition

ECU Pirates

Ja’Quan McMillian (ECU Sports Information photo)

DALLAS, Texas – East Carolina defensive back Ja’Quan McMillian has been named to the Football Writers Association of America All-America Second-Team according to an announcement by the organization Friday.

McMillian becomes the fifth Pirate in school history to earn FWAA All-America accolades following first-teamers Terry Long (OL/1983), Robert Jones (LB/1991), Andrew Bayes (P/1999) and second-team honoree Zay Jones (WR/2016).

A three-year starter and two-time American Athletic All-Conference pick, McMillian led the nation in passes defended per game (1.8) and picked off a FBS second-best five passes while booking 56 tackles (38 solo) in 2021. It marked the third-straight season he led the unit in interceptions (three in 2019, four in 2020) with his pass thefts against Appalachian State, Marshall, Charleston Southern, Tulane and Memphis.

The Winston-Salem, N.C. native and Jim Thorpe Award semifinalist also ranked third nationally in interceptions per game (0.4) and 21st in fumble recoveries (two). Heading into the Military Bowl Game against Boston College on Dec. 27, McMillian stands among the FBS career active leaders (top 10) in passes defended per game (first/1.21), total INTs (third/12), INTs per game (fourth/0.36) and total passes defended (seventh/40).

McMillian, who also garnered Second-Team All-America honors from The Athletic on Dec. 8, is the first All-America selection under head coach Mike Houston and the first for the Pirates since Nate Harvey in 2018 (Phil Steele Magazine/third-team).

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