Not good enough. - Sandra Dukes-US PRESSWIRE
The coaches and media unveiled their picks for the all-Big Ten selections yesterday. Predictably, they screwed it up.
First, let's start with the good. Michigan had two positional players of the year, and both were solid picks. Taylor Lewan won the offensive lineman of the year award while Will Hagerup boomed his way to punter of the year (they have that? Seriously?). Hagerup averaged 45 yards per punt -- first in the Big Ten. Taylor Lewan played his way to a possible first round draft selection. From there, things got weird.
- Lewan was unanimous first team, but Patrick Omameh came in for first-team honors from the coaches, despite not having a very strong year on a weak Michigan interior.
- No Jake MF Ryan. At all.
- In fact, despite being quite possibly the best defense in the conference, Michigan doesn't place a single player on either the coaches' or media's first-team defense.
- Oh yeah, Jake Ryan didn't make it.
- Not one Wolverine made it. Not too surprising.
- Craig Roh and Jordan Kovacs are honored by the coaches. Still no Jake Ryan.
- THERE"S JAKE RYAN. The media gave Ryan second-team honors. He was the only one on the media's second team.
Honorable mention, Coaches: J.T. Floyd; Jeremy Gallon; Brendan Gibbons; Will Hagerup; Roy Roundtree; Jake Ryan (!).
- Will Hagerup, punter of the year; honorable mention in the all-Big Ten team.
Honorable mention, Media: William Campbell; J.T. Floyd; Devin Funchess; Jeremy Gallon; Brendan Gibbons; Jordan Kovacs; Patrick Omameh; Denard Robinson; Craig Roh; Roy Roundtree.
- Listen, I get that the Big Ten has a strong crop of linebackers this year, but Jake Ryan was the best player on arguably the best defense in the conference. He was third in TFLs and just outside the top ten in sacks. Both he and Ryan Shazier have strong arguments to be made for first-team honors. Not even giving him second team for the coaches selection is ludicrous.
- The Hagerup thing is just weird. Also, I think Gibbons deserved more recognition.
- Craig Roh and Jordan Kovacs were both vastly underrated. Both are at least solid second-teamers.
- No mention of Kenny Demens? Like, at all? Shame.
- If I was going to honor another Michigan lineman, it would have been Schofiield rather than Omameh, who I thought had a better year once he settled in.
- The complete lack of star power on the defense, and the fact that it was one of the best units in the conference without placing nearly anyone on the first- or second-team is just another indication of how totally awesome Greg Mattison is. He doesn't have a lot of "wow" players yet. Instead, he has a bunch of solid guys that do their job and play as a cohesive whole. Once he gets those kinds of "wow" players, watch out.
- The ESPN Big Ten blog already did a good job pointing out some of the weirder things from a conference level, so I'll direct you there for more.