Kansas State had four first-team picks, including a league-high three on defense, on The Associated Press’ All-Big 12 football team announced Tuesday.
Leading the way for the Wildcats was senior defensive end Jordan Willis from Kansas City and Rockhurst High. In addition to a unanimous first-team selection, Willis won the AP’s Big 12 defensive player of the year award.
Willis, a soft-spoken captain, was a true difference-maker for the Wildcats this year. He led the Big 12 with 11 1/2 sacks, made 48 tackles, including 16 1/2 for loss, and also forced three fumbles while constantly rushing the quarterback.
He earned praise from K-State coach Bill Snyder and his teammates during the season.
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“He plays so hard and is just one of those guys that you should not make a mistake with if you are on the other side of the ball,” Snyder said. “If you are slow getting your feet set or hands up, he has a good chance to win the battle.”
K-State’s other first-team selections were senior guard Terrale Johnson, junior defensive tackle Will Geary and junior linebacker Elijah Lee of Blue Springs High. Kansas had one first-team selection, sophomore defensive end Dorance Armstrong.
Oklahoma had seven first-team selections after winning its 10th league title.
Big-play receiver Dede Westbrook, who has 1,465 yards receiving with 16 touchdowns that average 49 yards per score, was Big 12 offensive player of the year with nine votes. That was two more than repeat AP first-team quarterback Baker Mayfield, his junior teammate who was the league’s top offensive player last season. Westbrook and Mayfield are both Heisman Trophy finalists, and will be in New York for the ceremony Saturday night.
D’Onta Foreman, who ran for 2,028 yards this season and will leave Texas after a school-record 13 consecutive 100-yard games, got the remaining four votes for top offensive player. Oklahoma State freshman running back Justice Hill was chosen newcomer of the year.
Oklahoma’s Bob Stoops was chosen AP Big 12 coach of the year for a record fifth time. He is only the second coach to win the award in consecutive seasons. Stoops got 15 votes, and West Virginia’s Dana Holgorsen got the other five from a panel of 20 journalists who regularly cover the Big 12 throughout the league’s five states.
2016 AP All-Big 12 team
Players listed alphabetically with name, school, height, weight, class and hometown (“u-” denotes unanimous selections):
Quarterback – Baker Mayfield, Oklahoma, 6-1, 210, Jr., Austin, Texas.
Running backs – u-D’Onta Foreman, Texas, 6-1, 249, Jr., Texas City, Texas; Joe Mixon, Oklahoma, 6-1, 226, So., Oakley, California.
Tackles – Connor Williams, Texas, 6-6, 288, So., Coppell, Texas; Orlando Brown, Oklahoma, 6-8, 340, So., Duluth, Georgia.
Guards – Terrale Johnson, Kansas State, 6-1, 312, Sr., Manhattan, Kansas; Kyle Bosch, West Virginia, 6-5, 310, Jr., St. Charles, Illinois.
Center – Tyler Orlosky, West Virginia, 6-4, 296, Sr., Cleveland.
Receivers – u-Dede Westbrook, Oklahoma, 6-0, 175, Sr., Cameron, Texas; James Washington, Oklahoma State, 6-0, 205, Jr., Stamford, Texas.
Tight end – Mark Andrews, Oklahoma, 6-5, 250, So., Scottsdale, Arizona.
All-purpose player – Shelton Gibson, West Virginia, 5-11, 195, Jr., Cleveland.
Kicker – Cole Netten, Iowa State, 6-1, 210, Sr., Ankeny, Iowa.
Ends – u-Jordan Willis, Kansas State, 6-5, 258, Sr., Kansas City; Dorance Armstrong, Kansas, 6-5, 246, So., Houston.
Tackles – Vincent Taylor, Oklahoma State, 6-3, 310, Jr., San Antonio; Will Geary, Kansas State, 6-0, 298, Jr., Topeka, Kansas.
Linebackers – Travin Howard, TCU, 6-1, 210, Jr., Longview, Texas; Elijah Lee, Kansas State, 6-3, 228, Jr., Blue Springs, Missouri; Jordan Evans, Oklahoma, 6-2, 235, Sr., Norman, Oklahoma.
Cornerbacks – u-Rasul Douglas, West Virginia, 6-2, 208, Sr., East Orange, New Jersey; Jordan Thomas, Oklahoma, 6-0, 192, Jr., Klein, Texas.
Safeties – Jordan Sterns, Oklahoma State, 6-0, 200, Sr., Cibolo, Texas; Orion Stewart, Baylor, 6-2, 205, Sr., Waco, Texas.
Punter – Michael Dickson, Texas, 6-2, 209, So., Sydney, Australia.
Quarterback – Patrick Mahomes, Texas Tech, 6-3, 230, Jr., Whitehouse, Texas.
Running backs – Samaje Perine, Oklahoma, 5-10, 235, Jr., Pflugerville, Texas; Justin Crawford, West Virginia, 6-1, 190, Jr., Columbus, Georgia.
Tackles – Dalton Risner, Kansas State; 6-5, 300, So., Wiggins, Colorado; Victor Salako, Oklahoma, 6-6, 335, Sr., Huntsville, Alabama.
Guards – Ben Powers, Oklahoma, 6-4, 315, So., Wichita, Kansas; Adam Pankey, West Virginia, 6-5, 316, Sr., Hamilton, Ohio.
Center –Kyle Fuller, Baylor, 6-5, 315, Sr., Wylie, Texas.
Receivers – Jonathan Giles, Texas Tech, 5-11, 185, So., Missouri City, Texas; KD Cannon, Baylor, 6-0, 180, Jr., Mount Pleasant, Texas.
Tight end – Blake Jarwin, Oklahoma State, 6-5, 248, Sr., Tuttle, Oklahoma.
All-purpose player – Joe Mixon, 6-1, 226, So., Oakley, California.
Kicker – Ben Grogan, Oklahoma St., 6-1, 190, Sr., Arlington, Texas.
Ends – Josh Carraway, TCU, 6-4, 250, Sr., Flower Mound, Texas; Breckyn Hager, Texas, 6-3, 227, So., Austin, Texas.
Tackles – Daniel Wise, Kansas, 6-3, 285, So., Lewisville, Texas; Aaron Curry, TCU, 6-2, 270, Sr., Keller, Texas.
Linebackers – Ogbonnia Okoronkwo, Oklahoma, 6-2, 245, Jr., Houston; Devante Averette, Oklahoma St., 6-11, 230, Sr., Detroit; Malik Jefferson, Texas, 6-3, 238, So., Mesquite, Texas.
Cornerbacks – Ranthony Texada, TCU, 5-10, 170, Jr., Frisco, Texas; D.J. Reed, Kansas State, 5-9, 188, So., Bakersfield, California.
Safeties – Denzel Johnson, TCU, 6-2, 210, Sr., Gainesville, Texas; Fish Smithson, Kansas, 5-11, 190, Sr., Baltimore.
Punter – Zach Sinor, Oklahoma State, 5-10, 215, So., Castroville, Texas.
AP All-Big 12 Voting Panel:
Ryan Aber, The Oklahoman; Tommy Birch, Des Moines Register; Kirk Bohls, Austin American-Statesman; Jimmy Burch, Fort Worth Star-Telegram; Chuck Carlton, Dallas Morning News; Mark Cooper, Tulsa World; Mike Finger, San Antonio Express-News; Bill Haisten, Tulsa World; Kevin Haskin, Topeka Capital-Journal; Tom Keegan, Lawrence Journal-World; Blair Kerkhoff, Kansas City Star; Carlos Mendez, Fort Worth Star-Telegram; Todd Murray, The Dominion Post; Max Olson, ESPN.com; Randy Peterson, Des Moines Register; Kellis Robinett, Wichita Eagle; John Shinn, Norman Transcript; Mitch Vingle, Charleston Gazette; John Werner, Waco Tribune-Herald; Don Williams, Lubbock Avalanche-Journal.