2019 PAC-12 Awards

POWER 5

PAC-12 CONFERENCE

Offensive Player of the Year: RB ZACK MOSS, UTAH

Photo: Rick Bowmer/Associated Press

Utah running back Zack Moss was named the PAC-12 Offensive Player of the Year. Moss led the Utes in rushing with 1,416 yards, 15 touchdowns, averaging 6.0 yards per carry. He also had 28 receptions for 388 yards and two scores through the air.

On Nov. 23, Moss broke loose for 203 yards on 26 carries versus Arizona.

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Be sure to check out: Nat L. Faybian’s NFL Mock Draft 2.0

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Pat Tillman Defensive Player of the Year: ILB EVAN WEAVER, CALIFORNIA

Weaver led the nation in tackles last fall and earned consensus All-America honors as well as Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Year. 

Weaver led the country with 181 tackles in 13 starts (that includes a whopping 103 solo efforts — 20 more than the second-place finisher in solo tackles, Colorado’s Nate Landman). Ten of those tackles were for losses, including 2.5 sacks; Weaver also broke up three passes and forced two fumbles for the Golden Bears.

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Freshman Offensive Player of the Year: QB KEDON SLOVIS, USC

USC’s Kedon Slovis set quite a few records, while on his way to being named the PAC-12 Freshman of the Year. His 71.9 completion percentage is a USC single season best. It’s also the best in Pac-12 single-season history (with a minimum of 300 attempts) which was previously set by Stanford’s Andrew Luck in 2011.

Slovis also set USC’s single-season records for passing efficiency (167.6); and for most consecutive 300-yard passing games (three).

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Freshman Defensive Player of the Year: DE KAYVON THIBODEAUX, OREGON

Oregon defensive end Kayvon Thibodeaux earned Pac-12 Football Freshman Defensive Player of the Year honors after his dynamic first season with the Ducks. Thibodeaux broke the Oregon freshman record with 9 sacks, which was also good for second among all FBS freshmen this season.

Thibodeaux racked up an impressive 14 tackles-for-loss, the second most in the PAC-12. He showed his growth and development in the PAC-12 Football Championship Game, notching 2.5 sacks and the first ever blocked punt in PAC-12 Championship game history, as the Ducks upset Utah 37-15.

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Coach of the Year: UTAH’S KYLE WHITTINGHAM

Utah’s Kyle Whittingham earned PAC-12 Coach of the Year honors after leading Utah to a sterling 11-2 season and an appearance in the Alamo Bowl. The Utes narrowly missed a berth in the College Football Playoff and spent most of the season ranked as a top-10 team.

In 2019, the Utes featured a punishing defense which finished top of the Pac-12 in points per game allowed (13.2), yards per game allowed (256.2), and yards per play allowed (4.4).

Whittingham becomes the first Utah coach to win a PAC-12 Coach of the Year award since the Utes joined the PAC-12 Conference. He had previously won Mountain West Coach of the Year when Utah went 13-0 in 2008.

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2019 Big Ten Awards

Power 5

BIG TEN CONFERENCE

Nagurski-Woodson Defensive Player of the Year: DE CHASE YOUNG, OHIO STATE

Photo: Joe Maiorana|USA TODAY Sports

Young racked up 21 tackles for loss and 16.5 sacks en route to Defensive Player of the Year honors in the Big Ten. Pretty impressive considering Young missed two games this season. Plus, in Young’s last three games — against Michigan, Wisconsin and Clemson — he had zero sacks and just 1.5 tackles for loss. 

Young did not take part in any of the on-field workouts for his position group at the NFL Scouting Combine. He was to participate in position drills during Ohio State’s pro day on March 25 – but that has since been canceled due to the new Corona Virus Outbreak.

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Be sure to check out: Nat L. Faybian’s NFL Mock Draft 2.0

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Graham-George Offensive Player of the Year: QB JUSTIN FIELDS, OHIO STATE

Last year, Ohio State quarterback Dwayne Haskins was named the Graham-George Offensive Player of the Year.

This year, it’s Ohio State quarterback Justin Fields. The Georgia transfer threw for 3,273 yards and 41 touchdowns, ran for 484 yards and 10 touchdowns in his first season as Ohio State’s starting quarterback. The Buckeyes were undefeated in the regular season and won the Big Ten Championship.

“I’m proud of his development,” head coach Ryan Day said. “He’s come a long way in the pocket, moving in the pocket, seeing things and drop-back protection. We have a list of things that he’s working on to get better at.”

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Thompson-Randle El Freshman of the Year: WR DAVID BELL, PURDUE

Photo: The Champaign Room

Purdue’s Rondale Moore was named the Big Ten Thompson-Randle El Freshman of the Year in 2018, and now David Bell follows in his footsteps.

With Rondale Moore limited to four games due to injury, Purdue turned to freshman wide receiver David Bell. Bell led the conference with 86 catches for 1,035 yards and seven scores.

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Rodgers-Dwight Return Specialist of the Year: JAVON LEAKE, MARYLAND

Leake finished third in FBS, while leading the Big Ten, with 804 kick return yards. He also led Big Ten with two kick return touchdowns, tied for the most in a single season in Maryland history. Leake ranked 13th nationally and led Big Ten with a 26.8 kick return average. He has declared for the April’s NFL Draft.

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Hayes-Schembechler Coach of the Year: : P.J. FLECK, MINNESOTA

Photo: Gopher Sports

Big Ten coaches have selected P.J. Fleck as their choice for the Big Ten’s Hayes-Schembechler Coach of the Year. Fleck was honored with the award after leading the Minnesota Golden Gophers to their first 10-win regular season since 1905.

Fleck led the Gophers to their first 9-0 start since 1904, culminating in a 31-26 upset of then No. 4-ranked Penn State. Minnesota was ranked as high as No. 8 at one point by the College Football Playoff selection committee.

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2019 SEC Awards

POWER 5

SOUTHEASTERN CONFERENCE

With the NFL Scouting Combine recently finished, we’ll take a quick re-cap of the major D-I College Football Conferences awards.

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OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR: QB JOE BURROW, LSU

Image: Josh Auzenne/WAFB-TV

SEC’s Offensive Player of the Year was LSU quarterback Joe Burrow. No real surprise here. Burrow threw for 5,671 yards and 60 touchdowns. He led his team through an undefeated season and a National Championship.

He won every notable award there is in Div I FBS football: the Heisman, the Maxwell Award, the Walter Camp Player of the Year Award, the Davey O’Brien Award (National Quarterback of the Year), the Manning Award (National Quarterback of the Year), the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award, and was also named AP National Player of the Year.

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Be sure to check out: Nat L. Faybian’s NFL Mock Draft 2.0

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DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR: DT DERRICK BROWN, AUBURN

Brown would have surely been a first round pick if he would have come out as a junior. Instead, he decided to return to Auburn for his senior season. He has parlayed that decision into a top-10 selection in this April’s NFL Draft.

He was named the SEC’s Defensive Player of the Year after posting 55 tackles, 12.5 tackles for loss and four sacks during the 2019 season.

Along with All-SEC and All-American honors, Brown won the 2019 Lott IMPACT Trophy, which goes to the defensive player who has the biggest IMPACT (Integrity, Maturity, Performance, Academics, Community and Tenacity). 

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SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYER OF THE YEAR: WR Jaylen Waddle, Alabama

Alabama is a team loaded with playmakers, and sophomore wide receiver Jaylen Waddle is one that made a significant mark in 2019. In the 2019 Iron Bowl, he recorded 230 all-purpose yards and four touchdowns — three coming through the air and one resulting from an electric 98-yard kickoff return.

Waddle is said to be as fast as departing teammate Henry Ruggs. Ruggs recently ran a sub 4.3 at the NFL Scouting Combine. Waddle’s speed helped his win the SEC Special Team’s Player of the Year award. He led the nation averaging 24.35 yards per punt return, including a 77-yard touchdown against LSU.

Note: Last year, Waddle was named the SEC Freshman of the Year. Can’t wait to see what kind of break-out season he’ll have in the 2020 season.

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FRESHMAN OF THE YEAR: QB Bo Nix, Auburn

Photo: Auburn Athletics

Last spring, Nix was caught in a heated quarterback competition at Auburn. The Tigers didn’t declare who had won the job until shortly prior to the opening of the season. The win the job, Nix had to be out the highly touted Joey Gatewood and Malik Willis, who had spent the previous two seasons as a back-up to Jarret Stidham.

In the end, Head Coach Gus Malzahn picked the right guy for the job: Bo Nix. While Nix had his moments where he looked like a true freshman, he also had moments where he flashed and you would think, “Wow, he’s going to be special.”

On his way to earning the SEC Freshman of the Year award, Nix threw for 2,542 yards and 16 touchdowns (both Auburn freshman records), while rushing for 313 yards and scoring 7 more TDs on the ground.

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SCHOLAR-ATHLETE OF THE YEAR: RODRIGO BLANKENSHIP, GEORIGA

Blankenship graduated Cum Laude (3.71 GPA) in December 2018 with a degree in Digital and Broadcast Journalism. The 2019 Academic All-American was a 2018 winner of the Billy Payne Award for graduating with at least a 3.0 GPA and being on the football team for four years.

On the field, Blankenship was the winner of the 2019 Lou Groza Award while scoring a school record 440 points in his career. 

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JACOBS BLOCKING TROPHY: LT ANDREW THOMAS, GEORGIA

Thomas has anchored a Georgia offensive line that has allowed an SEC-leading 0.92 sacks per game. The Bulldogs are No. 5 in the conference in rushing offense, averaging 189.5 yards per game.

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SEC COACH OF THE YEAR: ED ORGERON, LSU

Photo: AP/Gerald Herbert

Orgeron led his team to an exciting 15-0 record. Along the way they beat No. 9 ranked Texas, No. 7 ranked Florida, No. 9 ranked Auburn, No. 3 ranked Alabama, No. 5 ranked Georgia, No. 4 ranked Oklahoma, and No. 2 ranked Clemson.

Orgeron said after winning the National Championship, “Now, I think that this team is going to be mentioned as one of the greatest teams in college football history.”

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2019 ACC Awards

POWER 5

ATLANTIC COASTAL CONFERENCE

PLAYER OF THE YEAR & OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR: TRAVIS ETIENNE, CLEMSON

Photo: Clemson Athletics

Clemson junior running back Travis Etienne has been named the Atlantic Coast Conference Football Player of the Year for the second consecutive season. He is the first running back since North Carolina’s Mike Voight (1975-76) to win the honor in multiple years. Etienne enters the Fiesta Bowl vs Ohio State as the conference’s all-time leader in career touchdowns (58) and rushing touchdowns (54). In 2019, Etienne rushed for 1,500 yards with an 8.2 yard per carry average.

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Be sure to check out: Nat L. Faybian’s NFL Mock Draft 2.0

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DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR: ISAIAH SIMMONS, CLEMSON

Photo: Matthew Emmons|USA TODAY Sports

In only his second full year at the linebacker position after moving from safety following the 2017 season, Simmons owns a team-high 83 tackles and ranks sixth among ACC defenders with 14 tackles for loss. The athletic junior from Olathe, Kansas, has also registered six quarterback sacks as the leader of a Clemson unit that leads the nation in fewest points allowed per game (10.1) and ranks second in total defense.

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ROOKIE OF THE YEAR & OFFENSIVE ROOKIE OF THE YEAR: SAM HOWELL, NORTH CAROLINA

Photo: Gobbler Country

Howell leads the ACC in passing yards (3,347) and touchdowns (35) this season. His 35 passing touchdowns is an ACC and FBS single-season record for a true freshman. Of the seven ACC quarterbacks with at least 300 passing attempts, he has thrown the second-least interceptions with seven.

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DEFENSIVE ROOKIE OF THE YEAR: GREGORY ROUSSEAU, MIAMI

Among Rousseau’s top performances of the year came in his first-ever appearance versus rival Florida State on the road in Tallahassee on Nov. 2. Rousseau finished the game with a career-high five tackles-for-loss and four sacks in a dominant win, earning Walter Camp National Defensive Player of the Week and ACC Defensive Lineman of the Week honors for his performance.

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COACH OF THE YEAR: SCOTT SATTERFIELD, LOUISVILLE

Satterfield took a team that last season went 2-10 without a conference win and led the Cardinals to a 7-5 record, a second-place finish in the Atlantic Division and a berth in the Music City Bowl against Mississippi State.

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