EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. — The name has changed, but he is the same player who had a breakout freshman season for the University of Maine football team last fall.

Linebacker Christophe Mulumba Tshimanga has been named the Eastern College Athletic Conference Defensive Rookie of the Year, which was announced March 27 in the Lexus Club at MetLife Stadium at the annual Eastern College Football Awards Banquet.

Mulumba Tshimanga, who came to Maine from Montreal but is a native of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, had been going only by Mulumba until recently.

Two other Black Bear football players, Jeff Gakos (Basking Ridge, N.J.) and Kendall James (Roselle, N.J.), were each honored to the Division I Football Championship Subdivision ECAC All-Star Team.

Mulumba Tshimanga, who was also named the Colonial Athletic Association Defensive Rookie of the Year, finished his first season on the field for the Black Bears with 118 tackles, two interceptions and four tackles for loss.

He helped lead Maine to a 10-2 regular season record, a berth in the NCAA FCS Playoffs and was also named the New England Football Writers’ Association Rookie of the Year. Mulumba Tshimanga earned FCS All-New England First Team and First Team All-CAA honors.