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December 2, 2009Texas A&M is headed to a bowl game this season for the first time in the Mike Sherman era and will find out its fate Sunday, but Tuesday the Aggies got good news on the individual front as six Aggies made earned All-Big 12 honors from a vote of the league's coaches.
The Aggies were headlined by running back Christine Michael who was named the Offensive Freshman of the Year and jack Von Miller who was named First-Team All-Big 12 on defense on the heels of his NCAA-leading 17 sacks.
"I am proud of our team and how hard they worked last offseason, during the spring and summer as well as this fall. They have done everything I have asked of them," Sherman said. "The older guys took the younger players under their wings and helped our team improve. Due to our improved play as a team, some of the players have earned recognition as All-Big 12 and I am happy for their recognition."
Michael rushed for 767 yards and nine touchdowns while Miller had 44 tackles and 21 tackles for loss to go along with 17 sacks as well as five pass breakups and four forced fumbles.
The Aggies placed four players on the second team, headlined by quarterback Jerrod Johnson who threw for an A&M record 3,217 yards and 28 touchdowns and also rushed for 455 yards and eight touchdowns. Offensive lineman Lee Grimes was also on the team after starting every game for the Aggies at right tackle while sophomore safety Trent Hunter, who led the Aggies in tackles with 87.
The strangest selection of all players was the selection of A&M senior tight end Jamie McCoy as a fullback on the second team. McCoy played fullback sparingly for the Aggies, but rushed for 80 yards on 11 carries for an average of 7.3 yards per carry.
Ten other Aggies were named honorable mention All-Big 12. Among them were freshman punter Ryan Epperson, sophomore receiver Jeff Fuller, running back Cyrus Gray, linebacker Michael Hodges, freshman offensive lineman Patrick Lewis, senior offensive lineman Kevin Matthews, freshman receiver Uzoma Nwachukwu, senior safety Jordan Pugh, sophomore receiver Ryan Tannehill and sophomore linebacker Garrick Williams.
Hodges received votes for Defensive Newcomer of the Year while Johnson received votes for Offensive Player of the Year. Nwachukwu also received votes for Offensive Freshman of the Year and Miller received votes for both Defensive Player of the Year and Defensive Lineman of the Year.
"Now we have to continue to get better," Sherman said. "We have an opportunity to play in a bowl game and this preparation time is a great opportunity for our entire team to improve."