It’s time for the seventh annual edition of the very prestigious HP All-American team. First, the offense:
1st team: Cameron Newton, Auburn
2nd team: Andrew Luck, Stanford
3rd team: Denard Robinson, Michigan
Kellen Moore, Boise State
Ryan Mallett, Arkansas
Andy Dalton, TCU
Darron Thomas, Oregon
Tyrod Taylor, Va. Tech
Notes: Cam Newton is a no-brainer at the top spot. I think Luck is a special talent who has to be recognized, while Robinson’s yardage was basically the same as Newton’s…he just had fewer touchdowns.
1st team: LaMichael James, Oregon
2nd team: Daniel Thomas, Kansas State
3rd team: Mikel LeShoure, Illinois
Jordan Todman, Connecticut
Kendall Hunter, Oklahoma State
Marcus Lattimore, South Carolina
Knile Davis, Arkansas
Vai Taua, Nevada
Notes: James led the nation in rushing and when healthy is a really special player. Thomas is the nation’s premier power back, while LeShoure might be the rising star of the bunch.
1st team: Charles Clay, Tulsa
2nd team: Vince Murray, Navy
3rd team: Stanley Havili, USC
Owen Marecic, Stanford
Fred Munzenmaier, Georgia
Notes: Clay capped an outstanding career with another productive season. Same goes with Murray and Havili.
1st team: Justin Blackmon, Oklahoma State; Alshon Jeffery, South Carolina
2nd team: Ryan Broyles, Oklahoma; Greg Salas, Hawaii
3rd team: Juron Criner, Arizona; Kealoha Pilares, Hawaii
Jordan White, Western Michigan
Aldrick Robinson, SMU
Leonard Hankerson, Miami
Torrey Smith, Maryland
Michael Floyd, Notre Dame
Notes: Some tough calls here, but with Blackmon being the no-brainer of the bunch, I had to go with Jeffery for the other spot. I just see him as being more physically dominant than Broyles, who had an incredible year in his own right. I’m not so sure that Pilares isn’t better than Salas, but I think they are both future NFL guys. Criner was the clear standout receiver in the Pac-10.
1st team: Michael Egnew, Missouri
2nd team: Lance Kendricks, Wisconsin
3rd team: Ladarius Green, Louisiana-Lafayette
D.J. Williams, Arkansas
Eric Lair, Minnesota
Ted Bolser, Indiana
Orson Charles, Georgia
Joe Halahuni, Oregon State
Notes: Seems like every year there is a Missouri or Wisconsin tight end on this list. Both Egnew and Kendricks carried on the tradition quite well. Green is often overlooked, but he had a great year.
Offensive Line Unit
Per HP tradition, we will not choose individual All-Americans on the offensive line.
We refuse to do so because, unlike other people who pick All-Americans, we admit that we have no idea who really are the best offensive linemen.
There are no individual stats to go by. Highlights rarely show what they do. We could go purely off of hearsay, but wouldn’t that be dishonest? What’s more, there are 600 starting offensive linemen in Division One. It’s almost impossible to have seen enough of them to know who is really the best. So, while other All-American teams choose linemen based almost solely on reputation, we will not. Instead, we look at a combination of factors, including sacks allowed, rushing offense, tackles for loss allowed, etc., to come up with our All-American unit.
1st team: Oregon
2nd team: Stanford
3rd team: Boise State
Notes: Oregon’s offense was dominant for much of the year and that was due, in large part, to the ability of its offensive line to execute Chip Kelly’s spread to perfection. Stanford’s line was able to both protect the quarterback and run the ball effectively as well as any other unit. The same can be said for Boise State.