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Zach Cunningham
ILB #41

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Selected by the Houston Texans with the 25th pick in the second round (57th overall) of the 2017 NFL Draft.
Selected by the Houston Texans with the 25th pick in the second round (57th overall) of the 2017 NFL Draft.

Played three seasons (2014-16) at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tenn. after redshirting the 2013 campaign
Finished his Commodores career ranked third in program history with 39.5 tackles for loss and finished with 295 career tackles
Butkus Award Finalist (2016)
Chuck Bednarik Award Semifinalist (2016)
Coaches First Team All-SEC (2015-16)
Associated Press First Team All-SEC (2015-16)
Midseason All-America – SI.com, FOXSports.com, Sporting News, CBSSports.com (2016)
First Team All-America – FWAA, AP, AFCA, Walter Camp, ESPN, USA Today, SI.com (2015)
Phil Steele Third Team All-American (2015)
Phil Steele First Team All-SEC (2015)
ESPN.com First Team All-SEC (2015)

2016 (Vanderbilt):
Enjoyed one of the most impressive seasons by any defensive player in Vanderbilt history, earning consensus All-American status
Swept first team All-America honors from every prestigious outlet, including Associated Press, Football Writers of America (FWAA), Walter Camp Foundation, American Football Coaches Association (AFCA), ESPN, Sports Illustrated, CBS Sports, The Sporting News and USA Today
Became just the third player in Vanderbilt history to earn first team All-American honors from the Walter Camp Foundation
Named as Butkus Award finalist and semifinalist for the Chuck Bednarik Award
Finished the regular season leading the SEC with 125 total tackles (9.6 per game), ranking sixth nationally
His 68 solo tackles ranked second among all SEC defenders, and he also ranked among the national leaders and tied for second in the SEC with 16.5 tackles for loss
Paced the SEC and ranked second nationally with four fumble recoveries
Earned National Defensive Player of the Week honors from Walter Camp, Maxwell Football Club and FWAA after a remarkable 19-tackle performance in Vanderbilt’s 17-16 road win at Georgia (10/15)
Closed the regular season with his second SEC Defensive Player of the Week recognition after posting 10 tackles, a forced fumble and fumble recovery in Vanderbilt’s 45-34 win at Tennessee (11/25)
Averaged 11.1 tackles against the Commodores’ eight SEC opponents
Registered 10 stops, including nine solo tackles, and a pair of tackles for loss, at Missouri  (11/12)

2015 (Vanderbilt):
Played in all 12 games and earning nine starts at inside linebacker as a redshirt sophomore
Ranked among the league leaders in numerous statistical categories, including tackles for loss, solo tackles, total tackles, forced fumbles and fumble recoveries even though he didn’t become a starter until the third game
SEC head coaches named him All-SEC first team for his efforts
Registered 16.5 tackles for loss, which marked the third-highest total among SEC defenders in the regular season and the most by a Commodore since All-America linebacker Jamie Winborn logged 23 tackles for loss in 1999
His three fumble recoveries shared the SEC lead and his four forced fumbles, bettered by just one Vanderbilt player in the last 20 years, ranked third in the league
Made 69 solo tackles, which were the most by a Commodore since All-SEC linebacker Moses Osemwegie registered 78 solo stops in 2003
His 103 total tackles were the most by a Vanderbilt defender since all-league linebacker Chris Marve amassed 121 tackles in 2009
Posted at least 10 tackles in seven of the last nine games, topped by a 12-solo tackle, 15-total tackle performance at Middle Tennessee State (10/3)
Ended the season with four straight double-digit tackle games, making him the first Commodore to do so since Osemwegie in 2005
Amassed 15 tackles for loss in seven-game midseason stretch

2014 (Vanderbilt):
Capped off a solid redshirt freshman campaign by closing the season among the team’s most productive defenders
Participated in 11 games, missing only the Charleston Southern game
Finished the year with 67 total tackles (37 solo), 1.5 sacks, 6.5 tackles for loss and a forced fumble
Earned starts at inside linebacker in team’s 3-4 scheme during last five games against Missouri, Old Dominion, Florida, Mississippi State and Tennessee
Averaged 8.2 tackles per game as a starting linebacker
Posted a team single-game high of 13 total tackles at Mississippi State... Registered 11 tackles, including a sack, vs. Florida (11/8)
Recorded multiple tackles for loss at Georgia (10/4) and vs. Tennessee (11/29)

2013 (Vanderbilt):
Redshirted as a true freshman, participating as a scout team linebacker

Parents are Fred and Sophie Cunningham
Attended Pinson (Ala.) Valley High School
Senior captain and three-year starter at linebacker for the Indians
Concluded his prep career by receiving Alabama 5A Lineman of the Year and Birmingham News’ Lineman of the Year honors after 2012 campaign
Amassed 448 total tackles during his three-year varsity career
As a senior in 2012, earned First Team All-State after leading PVHS to an 8-4 record and the second round of the 5A playoffs
Contributed 194 total tackles, including 41 tackles for loss and 12 sacks along with four blocked punts during the season
Participated in postseason Semper Fidelis All-American Bowl
As junior in 2011, earned All-State recognition after registering 152 tackles
Dad works in landscaping
Has four brothers: Frederick, Ethan, Nathan and Zapheth; and two sisters, Gabriel and Danica
Enjoys playing the guitar
Majored in economics while attending Vanderbilt

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