Mur­ray named the Big 12 of­fen­sive player of year

Texarkana Gazette - - SPORTS -

FORT WORTH, Texas—Ok­la­homa quar­ter­back Kyler Mur­ray is the unan­i­mous pick for The As­so­ci­ated Press Big 12 of­fen­sive player of the year, the fourth con­sec­u­tive sea­son a player from the con­fer­ence cham­pion Soon­ers has won the honor.

Mur­ray, a Heis­man Tro­phy fi­nal­ist who this week was also named the AP’s na­tional player of the year , was one of a league-high six first-team picks from Ok­la­homa on the AP All-Big 12 team an­nounced Fri­day.

West Vir­ginia junior line­backer David Long Jr. was se­lected as the league’s top de­fen­sive player, and Kansas fresh­man run­ning back/ kick re­turner Pooka Wil­liams Jr. the league’s new­comer of the year. The bal­lots were sub­mit­ted be­fore Wil­liams’ ar­rest on sus­pi­cion of do­mes­tic bat­tery this week. Ok­la­homa’s Lin­coln Ri­ley was named Big 12 coach of the year in a split vote.

Mur­ray has set a school record with 4,945 to­tal yards (4,053 pass­ing, 892 rush­ing) and ac­counted for 51 touch­downs (40 pass­ing,

11 rush­ing) af­ter the firstround MLB draft pick suc­ceeded Heis­man Tro­phy win­ner Baker May­field as start­ing quar­ter­back this sea­son. May­field was the AP Big 12 top of­fen­sive player in 2015 and 2017, and Ok­la­homa big-play re­ceiver Dede West­brook won it in 2016.

Long has 97 tack­les, in­clud­ing 18 1/2 tack­les for loss and eight sacks in his 11 games so far. Wil­liams is the Big 12 leader with 151 all-pur­pose yards a game af­ter he fin­ished his first sea­son with 1,125 yards rush­ing, 289 yards re­ceiv­ing and 246 yards on kick­off re­turns.

The Soon­ers this sea­son be­came the first team to win four con­sec­u­tive Big 12 ti­tles and are go­ing to the Col­lege Foot­ball Play­off for the sec­ond year in a row un­der Ri­ley. He re­ceived nine of the 20 votes for coach of the year, while Iowa State’s Matt Camp­bell got seven and Bay­lor’s Matt Rhule got the fi­nal four.

Long got 12 first-place votes for the de­fen­sive player honor, with Kansas line­backer Joe Di­neen Jr. and Texas de­fen­sive end Charles


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