The end of any season brings a time for rewarding outstanding accomplishments for the year.
Next week, the 2009 All-Big 12 team will be announced. One would think, or at least hope, that Daniel Thomas will be recognized with first-team running back honors, and as the Big 12 Offensive Newcomer of the Year.
For that matter, it could, if not should, be a K-State sweep with Jeffrey Fitzgerald being a top candidate for Defensive Newcomer of the Year recognition.
One would think the other for certain Wildcat first-teamer would be Brandon Banks as a kick returner.
While we wait until next week for the official announcement of the selections by the media members and Big 12 coaches, here’s our list of Wildcat recipients for the 2009 season.
Daniel Thomas … may be the second best running back in KSU history
Jeffrey Fitzgerald … a play disruptor
SPECIAL TEAMS MVP:
Brandon Banks … rewrote KSU record book in returns
OFFENSIVE NEWCOMER: (Other than Thomas)
Grant Gregory … played within his game and went 4-4 as a starter
DEFENSIVE NEWCOMER: (Other than Fitzgerald)
Emmanuel Lamur … led team in tackles
FRESHMAN OF THE YEAR:
Braden Wilson … lone freshman starter
OFFENSIVE MOST INSPIRATIONAL:
Nick Stringer … 24 consecutive starts
DEFENSIVE MOST INSPIRATIONAL:
Ulla Pomele … surfaced as leader among the linebackers
OFFENSIVE MOST IMPROVED:
Ken Mayfield … non-factor in 2008 to a full-time starter
DEFENSIVE MOST IMPROVED:
Tysyn Hartman … found a comfort at FS after making the move from QB last year
SURPRISE OF THE YEAR:
Prizell Brown …. Came to KSU as a tight end, but was shifted to defensive tackle and started the last two-thirds of the season
Jeron Mastrud … two-time Academic All-American in the classroom … started 25 consecutive games on the field
GAME OF THE YEAR:
Kansas State 17, Kansas 10
OVERALL PLAY OF THE YEAR (SPECIAL TEAMS):
Emmanuel Lamur’s blocked extra point with 32 seconds remaining against Iowa State that gave K-State a 24-23 victory.
OFFENSIVE PLAY OF THE YEAR:
A 31-yard Grant Gregory to Lamark Brown touchdown pass with 20 seconds left in the first half that changed the momentum of the game as it gave K-State a 10-7 lead at the half against Kansas.
DEFENSIVE PLAY OF THE YEAR:
John Houlik forced and Emmanuel Lamur recovered a fumble late in the first half against Kansas that set up the Offensive Play of the Year.
Josh Cherry started the season with a miserable 1-of-6 on field goals, but closed the year with an 11-of-12 string heading into the season finale against Nebraska.