Tom Dienhart, Senior Writer, December 14, 2011

The Big Ten was well represented on the AP All-America team, with nine players tabbed. Illinois DE Whitney Mercilus, Michigan C David Molk, Michigan State DT Jerel Worthy, Penn State DT Devon Still and Wisconsin RB Montee Ball and G Kevin Zeitler were all first-teamers, while Nebraska LB Lavonte David and Wisconsin C Peter Konz earned second-team honors, and Ohio State DT John Simon was a third-team pick. Most impressive, Mercilus, Still and Worthy represent three of the four defensive lineman on the first team. Yeah, it was that kind of year for the Big Ten in the trenches.

The only awards Big Ten players claimed were the Rimington Award (top center) by Molk, and the Hendricks Award (top defensive end) by Mercilus. It was a shame Ball didn?t net any hardware for his efforts, but he could come back for his senior season. If he does, he will be a Heisman front-runner.

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