COLUMBIA — Missouri defensive end Michael Sam became the Tigers’ second unanimous All-American on Wednesday when he earned first-team honors from the American Football Coaches Association and the Football Writers Association of America.
By TOD PALMER
The Kansas City Star
Sam joins Danny LaRose, who was a unanimous All-American end in 1960 for a Tigers team that won the Orange Bowl and finished 11-0 after Kansas forfeited its victory in the regular-season finale.
Sam, who has been invited to the Senior Bowl, already had been chosen first-team All-America by the Walter Camp Foundation, the Sporting News and The Associated Press.
He became the 13th consensus All-American in Missouri history Tuesday for being selected to three of the five lists officially recognized by the NCAA.
The final two lists were released on Wednesday and included 10 unanimous All-Americans, with Sam joined by Texas Tech tight end Jace Amaro, Michigan State cornerback Darqueze Dennard, Pittsburgh defensive tackle Aaron Donald, Florida State cornerback Lamarcus Joyner, Alabama linebacker C.J. Mosley, Boston College running back Andre Williams and three offensive linemen — Texas A&M’s Jake Matthews, Baylor’s Cyril Richardson and Stanford’s David Yankey.
Sam was a finalist for the Nagurski, Lombardi and Hendricks Awards after leading the SEC with 10 1/2 sacks and 18 tackles for a loss.
He is one sack from the Tigers’ record, 11 1/2 by Aldon Smith in 2009.
Senior cornerback E.J. Gaines, a Fort Osage graduate, was a second-team selection by the Football Writers Association of America.
Gaines leads the Tigers with four interceptions and ranks third with 68 tackles.