To be honest. I didn't quite expect it, but here you go. Butch Jones is the Big East's Coach of the Year, Isaiah Pead is the offensive player of the year and Dereke Wolfe has been named Co-Defensive Player of the Year. UC is the first school to sweep the top indivigual honors since Miami did it in 2001 with the trio of Ed Reed, Ken Dorsey and Larry Coker. You can view the press release in its entirety here.
Butch Jones is throughly deserving of the honor this year. I thought that UC had a chance to have a good year this year. Maybe 8 or 9 wins and a return to a bowl game. I certainly didn't expect a run to the top of the Big East standings and a share of a 3rd conference title in the last 4 years.
Derek Wolfe turned in one of the most dominating seasons you will ever see from a defensive tackle. 9.5 sacks, 19.5 TFL again for a DT that is amazing stuff. He played a huge role in transforming the defense from a absolute weakness into a relative strength.
Lastly, and most surprisingly, is Isaiah Pead's selection as offensive player of the year. Like everyone else I just kind of assumed that the award would go to Geno Smith who has obliterated Big East and school records at a frenetic clip. That being said it is good to see people realize just how good Isaiah Pead is. His 1489 yards from scrimmage was second in the Big East behind Tavon Austin and his 14 TD's led the conference.
Jones, Wolfe and Pead weren't alone in their recognition. Randy Martinez was named first team guard, which is a tribute to his hard work and toughness. He has been less thatn 100 per cent for going on a month. J.K. Schaffer and Pat O'Donnell were both named to the first team as weel. And in the shock of all possible shocks Drew Frey has been named first team saftey. That is the opposite of life affirming for me.
In all 8 Bearcats have been named to the All Big East first or second team. Zach Collaros and Alex Hoffman close out the Bearcats on the Big East teams. If there is to be a snub I would say its Walter Stewart who had a dominating stretch in the first 6 weeks of the season. That being said he did have a slow start to the year and the Big East as a whole is stacked with defensive linemen.
So all in all a good year no?