Posted by: marcmwm | November 24, 2008

Four Hawkeyes earn first-team all-Big Ten


            IOWA CITY, IA – A pair of University of Iowa football standouts have won two of the Big Ten’s major awards. Running back Shonn Greene has been selected as the league’s Offensive Player of the Year while defensive tackle Mitch King has been named Big Ten Defensive Lineman of the Year. The league’s major awards, including the all-Big Ten teams, were announced Monday evening.

            Greene becomes the second Hawkeye to win the top offensive award under Coach Kirk Ferentz. The first was Brad Banks in 2002. Greene is also a finalist for the Doak Walker Award, which goes annually to the nation’s top collegiate running back. The last Hawkeye to win the defensive prize was Jared Devries in 1997.

Four Hawkeye players have been named first-team all-Big Ten for the 2008 season. Joining Greene and King as first team selections are offensive lineman Seth Olsen and tight end Brandon Myers. Greene, King and Olsen were named to the first team by both coaches and the media. Myers made the first coaches unit. Greene was a unanimous pick by the media and King was unanimous by the coaches.

Iowa players named to the second all-Big Ten unit included center Rob Bruggeman, offensive linemen Bryan Bulaga and Kyle Calloway, linebacker Pat Angerer, defensive tackle Matt Kroul, defensive back Amari Spievey and punter Ryan Donahue. Named to the honorable mention unit was linebacker A.J. Edds and defensive backs Bradley Fletcher and Brett Greenwood.

“Our representation on the Big Ten awards list is a credit to how hard the entire team worked this season,” said Iowa Coach Kirk Ferentz. “We’re especially proud of Shonn and Mitch for winning prestigious individual awards. Fourteen members of this team are listed on the all-Big Ten teams. All of their achievements are a result of a total team effort.”

The Big Ten’s Most Valuable Player, named by the Chicago Tribune, will be announced at a later date.



From the Big Ten:




Iowa’s Greene and King Earn Offensive Player and Defensive Lineman of the Year Laurels, respectively;

Ohio State’s Laurinaitis Repeats as Defensive Player of the Year While Pryor Named Freshman of the Year; 

Penn State’s Paterno and Shipley Tabbed as Coach and Offensive Lineman of the Year, respectively.


Park Ridge, Ill. – The Big Ten announced the 2008 All-Conference football teams and individual award winners tonight as selected by the coaches and a media panel. After sharing the 2008 Big Ten Championship, Ohio State and Penn State picked up two individual awards a piece while Iowa also claimed a pair of individual honors. Buckeyes’ linebacker James Laurinaitis became the third Big Ten player to earn back-to-back Defensive Player of the Year honors while quarterback Terrelle Pryor was named the Big Ten Freshman of the Year. The Nittany Lions’ Joe Paterno collected his third Dave McClain Coach of the Year award from the media while center A.Q. Shipley was honored by the coaches as the Big Ten Offensive Lineman of the Year. For the Hawkeyes, running back Shonn Greene was named the Big Ten Offensive Player of the Year while the coaches selected defensive tackle Mitch King as the Defensive Lineman of the Year.


After earning consensus All-America honors the last two seasons, Laurinaitis returned to Columbus to spearhead a Buckeyes unit which led the Big Ten in scoring defense in conference play for the fourth straight year. The two-time Big Ten Preseason Defensive Player of the Year boosted the Buckeyes to a share of their fourth straight championship for the first time since 1977. In all games, the senior linebacker led Ohio State and ranked second in the conference with 10.1 tackles per game (121 total) while also collecting 5.5 tackles for loss, four sacks, two interceptions and a forced fumble in 12 games. Laurinaitis is the third player in Big Ten history to earn Defensive Player of the Year honors in consecutive seasons along with two other linebackers, Illinois’ Dana Howard (1993 and 1994) and current Northwestern head coach Pat Fitzgerald (1995 and 1996). Ohio State has now claimed four of the last six Defensive Player of the Year awards, including honors for linebacker A.J. Hawk (2005) and defensive end Will Smith (2003). Laurinaitis won the 2007 Butkus Award as the nation’s top linebacker and the 2006 Nagurski Trophy as the country’s top defender. He is a finalist for the Lombardi Award, a semifinalist for the Walter Camp Player of the Year and Bednarik Awards and a candidate to repeat as the Butkus Award winner.


Greene is the sixth Iowa standout to be named Big Ten Offensive Player of the Year, joining a group that includes Chuck Long (1985), Nick Bell (1990), Matt Rodgers (1990), Tavian Banks (1997) and Brad Banks (2002). The junior running back led the Big Ten with 1,729 rushing yards this season while scoring 17 touchdowns and averaging 6.2 yards per carry. He currently ranks second in the nation with 144.1 yards per game and is the only player in the country to rush for 100 or more yards in every game. He is the first Big Ten running back to surpass the 100-yard mark in 12 games since Northwestern’s Darnell Autry in 1995 and the first to accomplish that feat in all eight conference games since Penn State’s Curtis Enis in 1997. Greene’s 1,729 rushing yards set a new school record while his 17 touchdowns are tied with Tavian Banks for the single-season best. Greene is a semifinalist for the Maxwell Award, given to the nation’s top player, and one of three finalists for the Doak Walker Award, earned by the top running back.


Paterno guided the Nittany Lions to their second Big Ten title in the last four seasons and third since joining the conference to earn Big Ten Coach of the Year honors. After finishing 4-4 in the conference last season, Penn State produced a 7-1 mark with its lone loss coming on a last-second field goal at Iowa. The Nittany Lions ended the regular season 11-1 overall to post 10 or more victories for the second time in four seasons and the sixth time since joining the conference in 1993. Paterno has won 136 games since entering the Big Ten to rank sixth on the list of 12 mentors to collect 100 or more wins while at a conference school. He was previously honored as Big Ten Coach of the Year in 1994 and 2005 and becomes just the third individual in conference history to win three or more Coach of the Year awards. Michigan’s Bo Schembechler was named Big Ten Coach of the Year following six seasons (1972, 1976, 1980, 1982, 1985, 1989) while Iowa’s Hayden Fry was honored in three different years (1981, 1990, 1991).

Shipley became the first Nittany Lion to earn Big Ten Offensive Lineman of the Year accolades as voted by the coaches. The senior center spearheaded a Penn State attack that led the Big Ten with 33.9 points per conference game while also ranking among the top four in total offense (second with 409.0 yards per game), rushing offense (fourth with 180.2 ypg) and passing offense (fourth with 228.8 ypg). Shipley, a two-time first-team All-Big Ten selection, has started the last 37 games at center and played in every game the last three years.


King became the first Hawkeye to nab Defensive Lineman of the Year laurels from the coaches since Jared Devries was honored in 1997. Other Iowa defensive linemen to be honored include Paul Hufford (1984), Dave Haight (1987) and Leroy Smith (1991). King’s stout interior play helped Iowa lead the Big Ten in rushing defense for the first time since 2002 by allowing only 97.9 yards per game. The Hawkeyes also ranked third in conference play by limiting their opponents to only 16.2 points and 306.5 yards of total offense per contest. King led the team with 15.5 tackles for loss and added 51 total tackles, four sacks and a forced fumble in 12 games.


Pryor becomes the sixth Ohio State player to earn Freshman of the Year accolades, a group that includes Robert Smith (1990), Korey Stringer (1992), Orlando Pace (1994), Andy Katzenmoyer (1996) and Maurice Clarett (2002). Pryor led the Big Ten with a pass efficiency rating of 151.3 in conference games only, making him the first freshman to top the conference in that category since at least 1980 when the current pass efficiency system was introduced. The only other freshman to lead the Big Ten in passing since 1939 was Purdue’s Mark Herrmann, who ranked first in 1977 based on comparative grading. In all games, Pryor completed 95 of 152 passes (62.5 percent) for 1,245 yards and 12 touchdowns and ranked second on the team with 553 rushing yards and six touchdowns. He produced an 8-1 record as a starter and became the first OSU true freshman to start behind center since 1978.


Overall, there are 13 individuals repeating as members of the All-Big Ten first or second team from a year ago, including five first-team selections from 2007 who are on this year’s first team – Illinois’ Vontae Davis, Iowa’s King, Penn State’s Shipley and Ohio State’s Malcolm Jenkins and Laurinaitis. Jenkins and Laurinaitis have now been named first team All-Big Ten in three straight seasons, the first Buckeyes to accomplish that feat since Hawk in 2003, 2004 and 2005.


The conference office also announced honorees from each team for the Big Ten Sportsmanship Award. The student-athletes chosen are individuals who have distinguished themselves through sportsmanship and ethical behavior. In addition, the student-athletes must be in good academic standing and have demonstrated good citizenship outside of the sports-competition setting. Honorees for football are Brit Miller of Illinois, Austin Starr of Indiana, Matt Kroul of Iowa, Sean Griffin of Michigan, Javon Ringer of Michigan State, Jack Simmons of Minnesota, Eric Peterman of Northwestern, Marcus Freeman of Ohio State, Gerald Cadogan of Penn State, Ryan Baker of Purdue and Chris Pressley of Wisconsin. These 11 student-athletes are now candidates for the Big Ten Sportsmanship Award, as the conference office will honor one male and one female student-athlete from each institution at the end.


2008 All-Big Ten Conference Football Team





Daryll Clark, Penn State Quarterback Adam Weber, Minnesota

Shonn Greene, Iowa Running Back Chris “Beanie” Wells, Ohio State

Javon Ringer, Michigan State Running Back Evan Royster, Penn State

Eric Decker, Minnesota Receiver Arrelious Benn, Illinois

Derrick Williams, Penn State Receiver David Gilreath, Wisconsin

A.Q. Shipley, Penn State Center Rob Bruggeman, Iowa

Seth Olsen, Iowa Guard Stefen Wisniewski, Penn State

Rich Ohrnberger, Penn State Guard Kraig Urbik, Wisconsin

Alex Boone, Ohio State Tackle Xavier Fulton, Illinois

Gerald Cadogan, Penn State Tackle Bryan Bulaga, Iowa

Brandon Myers, Iowa Tight End Garrett Graham, Wisconsin

Kevin Kelly, Penn State Kicker Brett Swenson, Michigan State




MITCH KING, IOWA Line Jammie Kirlew, Indiana

Corey Wootton, Northwestern Line Brandon Graham, Michigan

Aaron Maybin, Penn State Line Willie VanDeSteeg, Minnesota

Jared Odrick, Penn State Line Mike Newkirk, Wisconsin

Greg Jones, Michigan State Linebacker Brit Miller, Illinois

James Laurinaitis, Ohio State Linebacker Pat Angerer, Iowa

Navorro Bowman, Penn State Linebacker Marcus Freeman, Ohio State

Vontae Davis, Illinois Defensive Back Amari Spievey, Iowa

Otis Wiley, Michigan State Defensive Back Traye Simmons, Minnesota

MALCOLM JENKINS, OHIO STATE Defensive Back Allen Langford, Wisconsin

Anthony Scirrotto, Penn State Defensive Back Jay Valai, Wisconsin

Zoltan Mesko, Michigan Punter Ryan Donahue, Iowa




Jon Asamoah, Michael Hoomanawanui, Ryan McDonald, Derek Walker,

Juice Williams;



IOWA: Kyle Calloway, A.J. Edds, Bradley Fletcher, Matt Kroul; MICHIGAN:

Obi Ezeh, Brandon

Minor, Terrance Taylor;




Trevor Anderson, Aaron Bates, Charlie Gantt, Brian Hoyer, Roland

Martin, Jesse Miller, Chris Rucker, Blair White;




John Gill,

Keegan Kennedy, Sherrick McManis, Eric Peterman, Brad Phillips, Brendan Smith, Tyrell Sutton, Amado




OHIO STATE: Nader Abdallah, Kurt Coleman, Rory Nicol; PENN STATE:

Jeremy Boone, Tony Davis,

Dennis Landolt, Jordan Norwood, Mark Rubin, Tyrell Sales, Lydell Sargeant;




Anthony Heygood, Greg

Orton, David Pender, Kory Sheets, Torri Williams;




Jonathan Casillas, Jason Chapman, P.J. Hill,

Andy Kemp, DeAndre Levy, Matt Shaughnessy, Eric Vanden Heuvel, Philip Welch.






Shonn Greene, Iowa




A.Q. Shipley, Penn State




James Laurinaitis, Ohio State




Mitch King, Iowa




Terrelle Pryor, Ohio State

Big Ten Sportsmanship Award Honorees:



Brit Miller, ILL; Austin Starr, IND; Matt Kroul, IOWA; Sean Griffin,






  1. He should have been offensive player of the year cause what he did to opposing defenses was just plain offensive.

  2. Good one, E.

    He’s on my Heisman list. I haven’t figured out where yet. Right now, I’m looking hard at Tebow. I respect what that kid does.

  3. Obviously, the Iowa OL deserves some credit, and with all but the rotation at RG getting notice they do, but how Calloway is confused for Bulaga is surprising. I think the media misplayed a couple of selections. Maybe most mysterious is bypassing Donahue. The Iowa Punt Team stats are dramatically good. Donahue led the conf in kicks inside the 20. He had 50 yard punts in about 1/2 or 3/4 of Iowa’s games. I think it’s a remarkable selection of King as the DL of the Year. Maybinks has the flashing game – but I think King is the more constant nemesis- and the selection was made on ‘grass’ and not paper.

    Happy for the Hawks.

  4. Bulaga not making first team all conference is a crime. Boone never looked all that great to me when I watched OSU, it seems like this is just a product of all the hype he had from a good junior year. Oh well, Bryan’s got a couple more years to rack up the honors.

    Anyway, it’s really nice to see so many guys get honored, I didn’t expect that many. I’m really happy for King in particular. He’s been so great for four year, that it’s nice to see him get honored like that. I would have seen him winning DL of the year coming, but he definitely deserves it.

  5. I thought Iowa would get two, maybe three. I didn’t think four would happen.

    The King choice is impressive, especially over Maybin.

    Good call by the voters.

  6. I respect Tebow as well but has he had a better year than Bradford? Don’t know their individual stats but what OU did to TTU(fraud) was nuts.

  7. 2 things:

    1) Who was the knucklehead coach that left Shonn Greene of his list. Not unanimous? I suspect the Zooker, but I could see Bret B picking PJ Hill and John Clay.

    2) Media pick on TE. No Brandon Myers was a surprise. Didn’t Scott Chandler get snuffed in the voting a couple years back after a great senior year? What’s with you media types?;)

    (Shonn Greene for Heisman!!!!)

  8. E, great point. I really like Sam Bradford, too. TTU (fraud, phony), I’m with you there.

    Paul, we can only guess on this. I’m going to offer three: 1) Pat Fitzgerald, dude hates Iowa; 2) Tressel, Beanie Wells is his guy and, let’s face it, there is much boosterism to this thing, 3) Ron Zook, dude hates Iowa.

    If Bielema didn’t pick Greene after his performance against the Badgers, well, that’d be shocking. What more would he want?

    When I’ve had this vote, Paul, here’s is how I’ve judged TEs, straight numbers. I’ll talk to a few coaches, but with TEs, I like numbers. In my mind, that’s production for a TE. That said, I don’t know how Garrett Graham (didn’t he star in “Used Cars”?) and Brandon Myers stacked up. Myers did a lot for the Hawkeyes and I probably would’ve voted him first team. I think he’s got a shot to play on Sundays, depending on what he runs.

  9. Why does Fitzgerald hate Iowa? Cause we broke his leg? Always wondered as I have read that more than a few times.

    Also, wouldn’t Tebow be a good Dallas Clark type in the NFL as I don’t see him being a QB at that level.

    Finally, read about the couple in Minny on Sat. who had sex in a bathroom stall during the game. It is defeinitely worth a blog Marc.

  10. Ummm I missed that article, can anyone point me in the right direction for that one EP???

  11. Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

  12. E, at first, I thought that was a hoax. Had to be, I thought.

    I dunno. Sad story at this point. Don’t drink and . . . I don’t know how to finish that one in this case.

    It’s in the lore now.

  13. Don’t drink and hook up with a stranger in the bathroom at a football game?

    Sad? more like stupid and it looks like the final score was 56-0 instead of 55-0.

  14. That sounds like a reasonable behavioral expectation, E.

    Looks like Oregon wants the Hawkeyes to go to Florida. They are cruising, 17-7 and marching, midway through the second quarter.

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