The Big 12 yearly awards were announced yesterday. Six different Mountaineers were named to the First or Second Team All Big 12 team. David Sills and his Biletnikoff season were named to the First Team.
Sills’ receiving brothers Gary Jennings and Marcus Simms were named to the second team. Jennings did a lot of dirty work for the team, leading the team in both yards and catches. Jennings was a reliable intermediate threat and quarterback Will Grier would often look his way on third downs.
Marcus Simms led the Big 12 in average kick return yardage and helped replaced former Mountaineer Shelton Gibson as the deep threat on the team.
Senior running back Justin Crawford notched his second straight 1,000 yard season. Despite only scoring four touchdowns in 2016, Crawford scored seven in 2017, including three against Delaware State.
Junior offensive tackle Yodny Cajuste finally finished an entire season healthy and was named to the second team All Big 12. Cajuste protected Will Grier’s blind side and could be playing himself into a NFL contract.
On the defensive side, it should come as no surprise that Kyzir White made the All Big 12 team. Kyzir was a force on the field, notching three interceptions and 81 tackles. Pro Football Focus has consistently grade Kyzir as the top run-stuffing cornerback in football this year.
Lastly, quarterback Will Grier won the award that should have just been named for him this season. Five times this season Grier was named Newcomer of the Week. Now Grier has been named Offensive Newcomer of the Year in the Big 12. Grier set the West Virginia school record with 9 games of at least 300 yards passing in route to 3,490 yards and 34 touchdowns. Despite playing 10 games and 3 series, Grier finishes 2017 with the fourth most passing yards in school history and the second most passing touchdowns.
He's a "newbie" but he's not new to this. @willgrier_ is second in @WVUfootball history for most passing touchdowns in a season.— Big 12 Conference (@Big12Conference) November 30, 2017
All in a season's work for the #Big12FB Offensive Newcomer of the Year. pic.twitter.com/Ze0Qw4hkTt
The following players were named Big 12 Honorable Mentions.
West Virginia: Dravon Askew-Henry (DB), Al-Rasheed Benton (LB), Reese Donahue (DL), Will Grier (QB), David Long Jr (LB), Colton McKivitz (OL), Kenny Robinson (DB), Elijah Wellman (FB), Ka’Raun White (WR)
David Long is a surprise that he wasn’t named higher. According to Chris Anderson at 247Sports, Long graded out on Pro Football Focus’ with a 90.5 grade, second on the team to Will Grier. Long’s grade put him as the #3 linebacker in the country, yet he somehow only makes honorable mention on the All Big 12 teams.