I realize the season has yet to officially conclude. However, it won’t be long before we’re inundated with All-American teams and Award shows.
So, I thought I’d kick things off with my own All Pac-10 team. First of all, it’s a foregone conclusion that Mark Sanchez will be the First Team quarterback. In fact, it would be shocking if he wasn’t also Pac-10 Offensive Player of the Year.
However, there is some suspense over the Second Team quarterback. There are several possibilities: Arizona’s Willie Tuitama, Arizona State’s Rudy Carpenter, Oregon State’s Lyle Moevao, and Oregon’s Jeremiah Masoli.
My choice: Oregon’s Jeremiah Masoli.
After backing up starter Justin Roper in the first few games of Oregon’s season, Masoli was thrust into the starting lineup after Roper went down at Purdue. Despite some inconsistent play and doubt from his fan base, he has responded admirably and deserves the acclaim.
The popular choice may be either (or perhaps both) of the seniors, Tuitama and/or Carpenter. However, not only have these two upperclassmen woefully underachieved, but Masoli bested both in huge Oregon wins – earning conference player of the week in each contest.
Moevao has led a miracle run for the Beavers, however, he has been absent down the stretch due to injury. And it appears will not see any action in the biggest game of the year—this Saturday’s Civil War.
Of the five potential choices, Masoli boasts the most conference wins (six) as a starter, the most rushing yards for a quarterback (which places him 12th among all runners in the Pac-10), and is the only one of the four to be named Pac-10 Player of the Week.
If you focus simply on their passing statistics for the season, Masoli will lose out. But, remember he is a dual-threat and was not the starter at the outset of the season.
Nevertheless, in looking at their numbers in Pac-10 games, you can see a much more even contest, with the ultimate edge going to Masoli.
Pac-10 Conference Games Only
The following are my selections for the 2008 All Pac-10 team.
First Team Offense
Second Team Offense
QB Jeremiah Masoli So Oregon
RB Toby Gerhart Jr Stanford
RB LeGarrette Blount Jr Oregon
WR Patrick Turner Sr USC
WR Michael Jones Sr Arizona St.
TE Ed Dickson Jr Oregon
OL Kristofer O’Dowd So USC
OL Paul Fanaika Sr Arizona St.
OL Alex Fletcher Sr Stanford
OL Charles Brown Jr USC
OL Tavita Thompson Sr Oregon St.
OL Adam Speer Sr Oregon St.
First Team Defense
DL Nick Reed Sr Oregon
DL Dexter Davis Jr Arizona St.
DL Victor Butler Sr Oregon St.
DL Fili Moala Sr USC
LB Rey Maualuga Sr USC
LB Brian Cushing Sr USC
LB Zach Follett Sr California
LB Anthony Felder Sr California
DB Taylor Mays Jr USC
DB Greg Laybourn Sr Oregon St.
DB Sydquan Thompson Jr California
DB Jairus Byrd Jr Oregon
Second Team Defense
DL Slade Norris Sr Oregon St.
DL Will Tukuafu Jr Oregon
DL Cameron Jordan So California
DL Clay Matthews Sr USC
LB Mike Nixon Jr Arizona St.
LB Reggie Carter Sr UCLA
LB Worrell Williams Sr California
LB Kaluka Maiava Sr USC
DB Brandon Hughes Sr Oregon St.
DB Patrick Chung Sr Oregon
DB Bo McNally Jr Stanford
DB Al Afalava Sr Oregon St.
First Team Specialists
PK Jason Bondzio Sr Arizona
P Aaron Perez Sr UCLA
KOR James Rodgers So Oregon St.
PR Jairus Byrd Jr Oregon
Second Team Specialists
PK Justin Kahut So Oregon St.
P Bryan Anger Fr California
KOR Jahvid Best So California
PR Mike Thomas Sr Arizona
Offensive Player of the Year: Mark Sanchez QB Jr USC
Pat Tillman Defensive Player of the Year: Rey Maualuga LB Sr USC
Freshman of the Year: Jacquizz Rodgers RB Fr Oregon St.
Coach of the Year: TBD *
* Pac-10 Coach of the Year will be determined by winner of Civil War.