Sunday, June 12, 2011
One of the great tragedies of college football unfolded yesterday. No it wasn't the whole Les Miles going to Michigan fiasco, instead, it was the announcement of the last All-America squad. No where listed on either the First, Second, or Third Team was Notre Dame's MVP Trevor Laws. Not only did Trevor lead the Irish in tackles with 112, but he was the nation leader in that statistic among defensive linemen.
The AP writers listed LSU's Glen Dorsey and USC's Sedrick Ellis, first team selections. The Second Team All-America's were Cincinnati's Terrill Byrd and Kansas' James McClinton, and rounding out the Third Team were Georgia Tech's Vance Walker and Texas' Frank Okam.
The other All-America Teams, Walter Camp, AFCA Coaches, Rivals, and CBS Sportsline.com, just have one team. What's also bogus is that along the defensive front of their repective teams is that there is only ONE true defensive linemen (Dorsey). Those teams put three defensive ends along the line with Dorsey: George Selvie (South Florida), Chris Long (Virginia), and Greg Middleton (Indiana). So you're telling me, each of these All-America Teams can mix and match their lineups any which way they want. Now that's a crock.
I don't have any problem with Dorsey making the First Team, because, let's face it, Big Baby was a monster. In fact, he was a consensus first team pick for every All-America Team out there. As for the others, it seemed like the sports writers and coaches chose players from bowl teams with above average records. Is that fair, probably not. Do you think they chose the best players, absolutely NOT! Here are the facts on each of the All-America recipients.
AP All-America First Team Defensive Linemen
Glen Dorsey (Sr.) LSU: 64 tackles, 6 sacks, 4 passes broken up, and 4 QB hurries
Sedrick Ellis (Sr.) USC: 56 tackles, 8.5 sacks, 6 PBU, 1 QBH, and 2 fumble recoveries
AP All-America Second Team Defensive Linemen
Terrill Byrd (Jr.) Cincinnati: 47 tackles, 6 sacks, and 5 QBH
James McClinton (Sr.) Kansas: 38 tackles, 2.5 sacks, 1 INT, and 5 QBH
AP All-America Third Team Defensive Linemen
Vance Walker (Jr.) Georgia Tech: 43 tackles, 8.5 sacks, 2 FR, and 3 forced fumbles
Frank Okam (Sr.) Texas: 49 tackles, 5 sacks, 4 PBU, 16 QBH, 1 FR, and 1 FF
The average for all six of the All-Americans were 49.5 tackles, 6 sacks, 2 PBU, 4 QBH, 0.8 FR, and 0.67 FF, and 0.17 INT's. How does Laws' stats compare to these so-called All-America's? Well let these numbers sink into your register: 112 tackles, 4sacks, 5 PBU, 7 QBH, 2 FR, and 3 Blocked Kicks. Those number overwhelm the competition. And speaking of competition, let me rehash what each team faced this year.
Georgia Tech (Emerald Bowl), 7-5, 6 bowl teams, 1-5
USC (Rose Bowl), 10-2, 5 bowl teams, 4-1
LSU (BCS Championship), 11-2, 7 bowl teams, 5-2
Kansas (Fiesta Bowl), 11-1, 5 bowl teams, 4-1
Texas (Holiday Bowl), 9-3, 6 bowl teams, 4-2
Cincinnati (Papa John's Bowl), 9-3, 5 bowl teams, 4-1
Notre Dame, 3-9, 10 bowl teams, 1-9
Notre Dame's 12 opponents finished 2007 with a combined 85-60 record, with 10 of them earning bowl eligibility. Those teams listed above don't come close. ND faced one of the toughest schedules and Laws dominated against those teams. I guess I just don't understand what these coaches and sportswriters are thinking. That's it, they are not thinking whatsoever!
Basically, Laws was penalized for playing on a bad team. Where's the justice? I thought to myself, how could this be. Then I saw who the voting panel was. Here's the AP All-America voting panel: Alex Abrams, The Morning New of Northwest Arkansas; Jimmy Burch, Fort Worth Star-Telegram; Mike Dearmond, The Kansas City Star; Doug Doughty, The Roanoke Times; Eric Hansen, The South Bend Tribune; Kirk Herbstreit, WBNA.
I emailed Eric Hansen of the South Bend Tribune today to see if he voted for Laws, and if there is even an honorable mention list as well. So far, I haven't received any response. Once I do, I'll post his response.
A crime was done yesterday. Sadly enough it was against an athlete who is probably going to be a better professional than those listed as All-Americans. Post season awards are now becoming more of a joke than they were before. Before I thought Rocket Ismail's Heisman Trophy runner-up finish to Ty Detmer was ridiculous, but this one definitely ranks up there.
Everyone in Irishland knows that Trevor Laws is a true All-American selection! Unfortunately, our votes do not count.