Baylor's RG3 a headliner on Star-Telegram All-Big 12 football team

Posted Wednesday, Dec. 14, 2011  comments  Print Reprints
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Star-Telegram 2011 All-Big 12 Football Team

Offensive Player of the Year:

Robert Griffin III, Baylor, QB (6-2, 220, Jr.)

The 2011 Heisman Trophy winner led the nation in passing efficiency (192.3 rating) and points responsible for (22.7 per game) while leading No. 12 Baylor to a 9-3 record, the school's best in 25 years. Griffin posted a 36-6 ratio of touchdown passes to interceptions.

Defensive Player of the Year:

Frank Alexander, Oklahoma, DE (6-3, 259, Sr.)

The primary disruptive force on a unit that led the Big 12 in scoring defense (22.8 avg.) and finished third in total defense (383.2 yards per game). Alexander led the Big 12 in tackles for losses (18) and shared the league lead in sacks (8.5).

Defensive Newcomer of the Year:

Arthur Brown, Kansas State, LB (6-1, 223, Jr.)

The transfer from Miami led the Wildcats in tackles (95) and helped No. 8 Kansas State (10-2) improve its run defense by 100 yards per game. K-State allowed 131.4 rushing yards per game (39th nationally), down from a 231.4 mark in 2010 (119th nationally).

Offensive Newcomer of the Year:

Malcolm Brown, Texas, RB (6-0, 215, Fr.)

The Longhorns' most heralded 2011 signee led the team in rushing (707 yards, 5 TDs) despite missing three games with injuries. He also caught three passes for 17 yards in helping take Texas (7-5) to the Holiday Bowl after a 5-7 season in 2010.

Coach of the Year: Mike Gundy, Oklahoma State

Under Gundy's direction, No. 3 Oklahoma State (11-1) won the school's first outright conference championship since 1948, when OSU was a member of the Missouri Valley Conference. OSU can secure the first 12-win season in school history at the Fiesta Bowl.

First-team offense

QB

Robert Griffin III

Baylor

6-2,

220

Jr.

RB

Terrance Ganaway

Baylor

6-0

240

Sr.

RB

Joseph Randle

Oklahoma St.

6-1

191

So.

WR

Justin Blackmon

Oklahoma St.

6-1

215

Jr.

WR

Kendall Wright

Baylor

5-10

190

Sr.

WR

Ryan Broyles

Oklahoma

5-11

187

Sr.

OL

Grant Garner

Oklahoma St.

6-3

292

Sr.

OL

Gabe Ikard

Oklahoma

6-2

290

So.

OL

Philip Blake

Baylor

6-2

315

Sr.

OL

Kelechi Osemele

Iowa St.

6-6

347

Sr.

OL

Levy Adcock

Oklahoma St.

6-6

322

Sr.

K

Randy Bullock

Texas A&M

5-9

205

Sr.

All-Pur.

Collin Klein

Kansas St.

6-5

226

Jr.

First-team defense

DL

Frank Alexander

Oklahoma

6-3

259

Sr.

DL

Alex Okafor

Texas

6-4

260

Jr.

DL

Jamie Blatnick

Oklahoma St.

6-3

265

Sr.

DL

Jacquies Smith

Missouri

6-4

255

Sr.

LB

Arthur Brown

Kansas St.

6-1

223

Jr.

LB

Emmanuel Acho

Texas

6-2

240

Sr.

LB

A.J. Klein

Iowa St.

6-1

243

Jr.

DB

Nigel Malone

Kansas St.

5-10

176

Jr.

DB

Markelle Martin

Oklahoma St.

6-1

198

Sr.

DB

Brodrick Brown

Oklahoma St.

5-8

185

Jr.

DB

Jamell Fleming

Oklahoma

5-11

191

Sr.

P

Quinn Sharp

Oklahoma St.

6-1

189

Jr.

KR/PR

Tyler Lockett

Kansas St.

5-11

170

Fr.

Second-team offense

QB

Brandon Weeden

Oklahoma St.

6-4

218

Sr.

RB

Henry Josey

Missouri

5-10

185

So.

RB

Cyrus Gray

Texas A&M

5-10

198

Sr.

WR

Ryan Swope

Texas A&M

6-0

204

Jr.

WR

Eric Ward

Texas Tech

6-0

202

So.

TE

Michael Egnew

Missouri

6-6

240

Sr.

OL

Luke Joeckel

Texas A&M

6-6

304

So.

OL

David Snow

Texas

6-4

295

Sr.

OL

Clyde Aufner

Kansas St.

6-6

301

Sr.

OL

Robert T. Griffin

Baylor

6-6

335

Sr.

OL

Austin Wuebbels

Missouri

6-4

295

Sr.

K

Justin Tucker

Texas

6-1

185

Sr.

All-Pur.

Fozzy Whittaker

Texas

5-10

198

Sr.

Second-team defense

DL

Nicolas Jean-Baptiste

Baylor

6-2

315

Sr.

DL

Kheeston Randall

Texas

6-5

295

Sr.

DL

Jackson Jeffcoat

Texas

6-5

253

So.

DL

Ronnell Lewis

Oklahoma

6-2

237

Jr.

LB

Sean Porter

Texas A&M

6-2

220

Jr.

LB

Keenan Robinson

Texas

6-3

235

Sr.

LB

Travis Lewis

Oklahoma

6-2

233

Sr.

DB

Kenny Vaccaro

Texas

6-1

214

Jr.

DB

Tysyn Hartman

Kansas St.

6-3

206

Sr.

DB

E.J. Gaines

Missouri

5-10

190

So.

DB

Carrington Byndom

Texas

6-0

175

So.

P

Trey Barrow

Missouri

6-1

195

Jr.

KR/PR

Justin Gilbert

Oklahoma St.

6-0

205

So.

Have more to add? News tip? Tell us

Call it the Year of the Upstart in the Big 12 football race.

Baylor quarterback Robert Griffin III became the school's first Heisman Trophy winner, silencing legions of naysayers in the process.

Oklahoma State won the school's first outright conference football championship since joining the Big Eight, a predecessor of the Big 12, for the 1960 season. Until this year, the Cowboys (11-1, 8-1 in Big 12) had not finished alone atop a set of conference standings since 1948, when OSU won the Missouri Valley title with a 2-0 league mark.

Kansas State (10-2, 7-2) finished eighth in the final BCS standings despite being picked to finish eighth in the Big 12.

How counterflow did things go in 2011?

By claiming the title, Oklahoma State ended a seven-year stretch of Big 12 championships won by either Oklahoma (five) or Texas (two). A quarterback led the league in rushing attempts (293) and rushing touchdowns (26). A receiver posted the league's highest passing efficiency rating (513.2) among players with multiple attempts.

Griffin, who led No. 12 Baylor (9-3) to the school's best record in 25 years, led the nation in passing efficiency (192.3 rating), points responsible for (22.7 per game) and yards per attempt (10.8). He finished second in total offense (386.8 avg.) while winning the Heisman and the Davey O'Brien National Quarterback Award.

But a case could be made that Kansas State quarterback Collin Klein meant just as much to the Wildcats in their turnaround season as Griffin did in the Bears' revival. Klein rushed for 1,099 yards, threw for 1,745 and accounted for 38 touchdowns (26 rushing, 12 passing).

If Klein adds two more rushing touchdowns in the Cotton Bowl, he will break the Big 12's single-season record (27), set in 1998 by Texas tailback Ricky Williams. In a league loaded with elite quarterbacks, Klein's unique skill set put him in the mix for all-purpose honors because he deserved one of the 26 spots on the 2011 Star-Telegram All-Big 12 Team.

What other awards should be dispensed this season? Here's our list:

Spread the Wealth Award: Oklahoma State became the seventh school to win a Big 12 football championship in the league's 16-year existence.

Thin the Herd Award: With a second consecutive year of conference realignment dominating the 2011 headlines, only four past winners will be in the mix for next year's Big 12 championship (Oklahoma, Texas, OSU, K-State). Three others will compete elsewhere (Texas A&M, Colorado, Nebraska).

Pound the Outsiders Award: The Big 12 was 27-3 in non-conference play, a .900 winning percentage that is the top nonconference mark in league history and the best by any league since 1997.

Dangerous Newcomer Award: In October, TCU accepted an invitation to join the Big 12 for the 2012 football season. The Horned Frogs (10-2), who won this year's Mountain West title, project as immediate contenders.

Job Half-Finished Award: Texas A&M trailed only once at halftime during a 6-6 season. But the Aggies squandered double-digit leads in five losses, leading to the dismissal of coach Mike Sherman. A&M was outscored 76-7 in the third quarter of its six losses.

Feeling the Heat Award: Texas coach Mack Brown, who has posted a 12-13 record in his last 25 games, recently added two junior college players (OL Donald Hawkins, DT Brandon Moore) to his list of commitments for the 2012 recruiting class. Brown, who typically avoids the JC talent pool, also has left open the possibility of adding a JC or transfer quarterback.

Missing Target Award: Oklahoma QB Landry Jones, a junior who has been projected as a possible first-round pick in the 2012 NFL Draft, threw zero touchdown passes after Nov. 5, the day Sooners' leading receiver Ryan Broyles tore his ACL against Texas A&M.

Biggest Stunner by a Visiting Team: Texas Tech beat Oklahoma, 41-38, as a 29-point underdog to end the Sooners' 39-game home winning streak. The triumph became more puzzling when Tech (5-7) followed with a five-game losing streak to end the season.

Biggest Stunner by a Home Team: Iowa State edged then-No. 2 Oklahoma State 37-31 in double overtime to win as a 28-point underdog. The upset sealed a bowl berth for Iowa State (6-6) and played a major role in denying OSU a spot in the BCS title game.

Biggest Breakthrough: Griffin's emergence as a Heisman winner, which lends credence to Baylor's long-term rebuilding efforts.

Biggest Backslide: A&M's emergence as a noncontender despite a Top 10 ranking to start the season.

Defensive Newcomer of the Year (Coaching Division): Baylor defensive coordinator Phil Bennett. Despite speculative personnel, the Bears' defense improved each week and forced 27 turnovers, second only to Oklahoma State (42) among Big 12 teams. Baylor collected 17 in the team's final five games (all victories). The timely takeaways helped Baylor (9-3) post its best record in 25 years.

Offensive Newcomer of the Year (Coaching Division): Oklahoma State offensive coordinator Todd Monken. The Cowboys' first-year coordinator put his stamp on the team's existing system and led the league in scoring (49.3 avg.) while racking up 557 yards per game.

Craziest Passing Stat: Five players threw TD passes for a Texas team that had just 11 for the season. The breakdown: QB Case McCoy (4), QB David Ash (3), WR Jaxon Shipley (2), WR John Harris (1), QB Garrett Gilbert (1).

Craziest Rushing Stat: Five teams lost starting running backs to season-ending injuries in October or November: Texas Tech (Eric Stephens), Oklahoma (Dominique Whaley), Texas A&M (Christine Michael), Texas (Fozzy Whittaker) and Missouri (Henry Josey).

Best Postseason Hire: Texas A&M coach Kevin Sumlin. There is no guarantee the former Houston coach will succeed in the SEC, where he -- and A&M -- will be new to the neighborhood in 2012. But he's a logical fit with strong, Texas-based recruiting connections. Of the two choices, Sumlin to A&M makes way more sense than ...

Worst Postseason Hire: Kansas coach Charlie Weis. The guy failed at Notre Dame, a football factory with a national recruiting base. What makes anyone think he'll up the ante at a basketball school like Kansas?

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