After picking up the latest copy of Lindy's preseason college football magazine I noticed an interesting feature they had on the Big Ten All-Decade team. So, I thought it would be a good blog topic to post my University of Iowa All-Decade team.
Notice: These picks do not reflect where a player was drafted or how well they did in the pros. This is strictly based on their college football productivity at the University of Iowa. Also the positions might not always go by strict formatting, for example the first team offensive line has three tackles, one guard, and one center. It just goes by who was the most productive on the line, regardless of interior position. Enjoy!
1st Team Offense:
QB: Brad Banks
This was really a coin flip between Banks and Drew Tate. You could make a good argument for either player. Although Banks was only the starting quarterback for one season you can't argue that he had one of the best seasons for any player in a Hawkeye uniform this decade. He led the supremely talented 2002 squad to an undefeated Big Ten season and championship while throwing for 2,573 yards and 26 touchdowns, not to mention his 423 rushing yards. Banks also garnered more national attention than any other Hawkeye this decade by winning the Davey O'Brien award, being name AP National Player of the Year, and being runner-up for the Heisman trophy. For those reasons he just barely gets the nod over Tate.
HB: Shonn Greene
HB: Fred Russell
The selection of Shonn Greene is an easy one, even though he only started one season this decade. Greene finished the 2008 years with 1,850 yards (second in the nation), 20 touchdowns, a consensus All-American, and won the Doak Walker award. Greene's 2008 statistics were all single season Iowa rushing records. The choice of Russell was a little harder as there have been many talented Iowa backs this decade. Others making viable claims for first team honors include Albert Young (led Big Ten in rushing in 05, 3rd all-time leading rusher) and LaDell Betts (2nd All-Time leading rusher, back-to-back 1,000 yard seasons). Russell barely edges these two out by also having back-to-back 1,000 yard seasons that were more successful than Betts (2002, 2003). Betts also is at a disadvantage having played two of his years in the 90s (1998, 1999).
WR: Maurice Brown
WR: Ed Hinkel
Mo Brown had the most productive season for any wide receiver in this decade by catching 48 balls for 966 yards and breaking the single season receiving touchdowns record in 2002. Hinkel is also a first team'er for his sure hands and solid consistency throughout his four year career.
TE: Dallas Clark
This is another no-brainer selection. Clark is not only the best tight end for Iowa this decade but one of the best in the NCAA's during that time frame.
OL: Robert Gallery
OL: Eric Steinbach
OL: Bruce Nelson
OL: Marshal Yanda
OL: Bryan Bulaga
I feel like I could run for a thousand yards behind this offensive line. Gallery was all-world during his career at Iowa, having won the Outland trophy. And, Bulaga (with two years eligibility remaining) could be the second coming.
K: Nate Kaeding
Was there any doubt about this one? Nate Kaeding is one of the best kickers in college football history.
1st Team Defense:
DL: Matt Roth
DL: Mitch King
DL: Jonathan Babineaux
DL: Aaron Kampman
Now there is a defensive line that would have any quarterback fearing for his life. Mitch King and Matt Roth provided the intensity and were team leaders during their years in a Hawkeye uniform, while also being extremely productive on the field. Kampman is one of the best ever at Iowa at his position, and Babineaux had a monster senior year after converting from fullback earlier in his career.
LB: Chad Greenway
LB: Abdul Hodge
LB: Fred Barr
Greenway and Hodge are also two all-timers at Iowa. They dominated Big Ten offenses for three straight years as starters. Barr was a four year starter who, while not as spectacular as Hodge and Greenway, had a very productive career for the Hawks. Other contenders included Mike Humpal, Mike Klinkenborg, and Pat Angerer.
S: Bob Sanders
S: Sean Considine
Bob Sanders was an easy selection. Considine was a smart player who often times was the quarterback of the Iowa defense. He was also more productive than other safeties this decade (Marcus Paschal, Miguel Merrick, and Derek Pagal).
CB: Amari Spievey
CB: Jovon Johnson
While Spievey is still a current player he had a solid year in 2008 (66 tackles, 4 Ints) and still has two years of eligibility remaining, including one this decade. He is poised to break out in 2009, and also gets recognition after defensive coordinator Norm Parker said that he may be the most talented corner they've had during the Ferentz era. Jovon Johnson, on the other hand, was very productive during his four year starting career at Iowa, including 16 career interceptions.
P: David Bradley
Bradley barely gets the nod over current punter Ryan Donahue.
What picks do you agree with? Disagree with? Who was snubbed? Who was overrated? And, finally who was the best player for Iowa this decade? (Greene, Gallery, Banks, Sanders, Greenway, Hodge, or Kaeding?)