Air Force guard Nolan Laufenberg added another accolade Tuesday, earning second-team preseason All-American honors from the Associated Press.
The senior from Castle Rock is just the second lineman outside a Power Five conference to earn a spot on the AP’s top two preseason teams. UTEP’s Will Hernandez was the other, earning second-team nods in 2016 and 2017 before the New York Giants made him a second-round pick in the NFL draft.
Laufenberg could follow that path, as most mock drafts have the 315-pound Falcon projected as a fourth-round selection in 2021.
Air Force’s leader in knockdown blocks last year, Laufenberg was a first-team Mountain West selection in 2019 and earned a first-team spot on the conference’s preseason list last month. Pro Football Focus has listed him as a first-team All-American, while the Walter Camp Football Foundation and USA Today placed him on the second team nationally.
Laufenberg and Air Force tackle Parker Ferguson were included on the Outland Trophy watch list in July.
The AP’s All-American team was inclusive of all players, regardless if their teams plan to play this year because of the coronavirus. Air Force falls in-between. The Mountain West has canceled its season, but the Falcons are still considering games against Army and Navy. The games remain on all three teams’ schedule, but Air Force has told The Gazette it might be several weeks before there are enough developments on logistics to discuss it publicly.