We’ll close an ugly weekend for the horns with some good news: Texas Longhorn senior defensive end Brian Orakpo won the Bronko Nagurski Trophy as the nation’s top defensive player.
The 6’4″, 253 pound Orakpo, a freak of nature, bench presses 515 pounds, squats 600, power cleans 380, runs a 4.6-second 40-yard dash, and has a vertical jump of 42 inches.
According to the University of Texas:
Despite missing two and a half games with a knee injury, he has registered 10.5 sacks (No. 6 NCAA), 18 tackles for loss (No. 11 NCAA), 27 QB pressures and four forced fumbles (No. 3 NCAA). He has been a leader on an 11-1 Longhorns team that ranks No. 3 nationally and is headed to the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl for a meeting with No. 10 Ohio State.
Past winners of the Bronko Nagurski include Warren Sapp, Charles Woodson, Champ Bailey, Roy Williams and Glenn Dorsey. The only other Longhorn to win the award is Derrick Johnson.
Says Orakpo from Charlotte:
Wow, I’m speechless. Winning the Nagurski Trophy is an unbelievable honor. I remember watching D.J. (Derrick Johnson) win it and thinking how special that would be. Now my name is right up there on the award with his and all of the other great players who have won it. It’s a great honor that I can share with my teammates, coaches and family because they deserve all of the credit for putting me in this position.
Orakpo started the weekend by receiving his degree from the University of Texas. At Lamar High School, he was an Honor Roll student who graduated with better than a 3.0 grade point average. He also was involved in community service while earning all-district honors in both football and basketball.
In a few months, he’ll be signing his first NFL contract.
Way to go, Rak!