Four Sooners were named to the All-Big 12 First Team as voted on by the league's coaches, the conference announced Wednesday. Offensive lineman Gabe Ikard and fullback Trey Millard were named to the first team along with defensive back Aaron Colvin and defensive lineman Charles Tapper. In addition, linebacker Dominique Alexander was named the Big 12 Defensive Freshman of the Year.
Ikard and Millard were both named to the first team for a third consecutive year, while Colvin earned first-team honors for the second year in a row. For Tapper, it marks the first conference honor of his career. Ikard, a senior from Oklahoma City, Okla., also earned honorable mention in the Big 12 Offensive Lineman of the Year voting.
Thanks in part to Ikard, the Oklahoma offense ranks second in the conference and 18th nationally with 235.8 rushing yards per game. The offensive line has also allowed just 14 sacks this year, a figure that ranks 17th in the country. Millard suffered a season-ending injury against Texas Tech on Oct. 26, but finished the year with 97 rushing yards and 78 receiving yards with pair of touchdowns and his usual standout blocking.
Colvin ranks fifth on the Sooners with 49 tackles and also has 5.0 tackles for loss, an interception and a fumble recovery. In his first season as a starter, Tapper ranks seventh in the Big 12 with 5.5 sacks on the season and is tied for 17th with 9.0 TFL.
Four OU players were also named to the All-Big 12 Second Team. Offensive lineman Daryl Williams earned second-team honors a year after his honorable mention status, while wide receiver Jalen Saunders, linebacker Eric Striker and kicker Michael Hunnicutt all earned the first conference accolades of their respective careers.
Saunders leads OU in both receptions (56) and receiving yards (654) and is tied for the team lead with six touchdown receptions. His figure of 4.8 receptions per game sits seventh in the Big 12. Striker is second among Sooners with 7.5 TFL, 3.5 sacks and seven quarterback hurries. He also has a fumble recovery for a touchdown this year.
Hunnicutt is tied for the nation's lead with a school-record 23 made field goals this year, while his conversion percentage of 88.5 is second in the Big 12 and 19th nationally. He also added to his game with a touchdown reception on a fake field goal at Oklahoma State on Dec. 7.
In addition, Gabe Lynn was named honorable mention at defensive back, while Frank Shannon received the same at linebacker. Head coach Bob Stoops was also an honorable mention choice for Coach of the Year.
The University of Oklahoma has placed at least four players on the all-conference first team every season since 2000 and at least one player on the team every season since 1926 (88 years). In fact, OU has only had one season when playing in a conference without first-team honors (1925). That's 98 of 99 seasons.
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