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Adrian Clayborn: A Villain, Big and Bold

MIAMI GARDENS, FL - JANUARY 05:  Adrian Clayborn #94 of the Iowa Hawkeyes looks on as the Hawkeyes celebrate their 24-14 win against the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets during the FedEx Orange Bowl at Land Shark Stadium on January 5, 2010 in Miami Gardens, Florida.  (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
Streeter Lecka/Getty Images
B.Senior Analyst IJanuary 6, 2010

"He’ll knock you ’round and upside down and laugh when he’s conquered and won."
Steve Sabol (Autumn Wind)

For a split second Tuesday night, I thought Adrian Clayborn might actually tear off Josh Nesbitt's arm and beat him with it. 

The junior defensive end for Iowa terrorized Georgia Tech's quarterback with a fury few outside of the Big 10 knew existed. Clayborn recorded nine tackles and two sacks in the 24-14 win over Georgia Tech.

The only positive yards the Yellow Jackets managed to pick up against the Hawkeyes came when they ran away from Clayborn.

No one can say Tech wasn't warned this would happen.  

Clayborn finishes the year second in the Big 10 in sacks, and tied for ninth nationally. He sits third in the Big 10 in tackles for loss, also ninth nationally.

Don't forget his 10 quarterback hurries, four forced fumbles and a blocked punt for touchdown.

He also might lead the nation in most quarterbacks knocked unconscious.

The 6'3", 285 pound junior is the undisputed leader of the Iowa Hawkeye defense. "We all rally around him. He's the general for the D-line," explains fellow defensive lineman Christian Ballard.

The assumption is that Clayborn is human, but he more resembles a cyborg—a cybernetic human being whose body has been taken over in whole or in part by electromechanical devices.

What I am saying is, Clayborn might be a Terminator. 

His mom won't argue against that theory.

"He was just a monster," Tracie Clayborn told the Gazette's Marc Morehouse during an interview earlier this year. "He was a big baby. It was like he was six months old at birth. No newborn clothes for him."

Monster...or Terminator?

Clayborn showed his terminator-like qualities earlier this season when he pancaked Penn State's Nick Sukay, then blocked a punt, picked up the ball and ran 53 yards into the end zone.

That earned him Big Ten Special Team’s Player of the Week. 

He showed those qualities again during Iowa's victory over Georgia Tech. This time, he earned Orange Bowl MVP.

Next year...dare I say, a potential Heisman candidate? 

After awarding Clayborn the MVP, FOX's Chris Myers asked him about his decision not to enter the NFL Draft. Clayborn told Myers he loved Iowa and was going to stick around and finish what he started.

Hopefully a few other Hawkeyes take Clayborn's advice.

 

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