COLUMBUS, Ohio (WTAJ) — Micah Parsons has been deemed the unanimous favorite as the Big Ten’s top defensive player for the 2020 season, according to the cleveland.com preseason poll.
The Penn State junior linebacker received multiple awards for his performance in his sophomore season, including being named a Consensus All-American by the NCAA and being selected to the Phil Steele All-Big Ten first team.
Parsons was also the first sophomore in Big Ten history to win the Butkus-Fitzgerald Linebacker of the Year Award.
Ohio State cornerback Shaun Wade trailed Parsons in second place in the preseason poll. The full ranking is below:
1. Micah Parsons, Penn State LB, 102 points (34 first-place votes)
2. Shaun Wade, Ohio State CB, 33 points
3. George Karlaftis, Purdue DE, 20 points
4. Paddy Fisher, Northwestern LB, 17 points
5. Kwity Paye, Michigan DL, 11 points
6. Aidan Hutchinson, Michigan DL, 6 points
7. Zach Harrison, Ohio State DE, 3 points
8. Jack Sanborn, Wisconsin LB, 2 points
8. Antjuan Simmons, Michigan LB, 2 points
8. Ambry Thomas, Michigan DB, 2 points
11. Eric Burrell, Wisconsin S, 1 point
11. Tyshon Fogg, Rutgers LB, 1 point
11. Dax Hill, Michigan S, 1 point
Parsons had 109 total tackles in the 2019 season with 14 tackles for loss of yardage. He is ranked fifth in the Big Ten averaging 8.4 tackles per game and finished the season with 10 or more tackles in three straight games and six out of the final seven games.
Parsons is tied for seventh all-time at Penn State with six forced fumbles.