Chosen for Big 12 Preseason Defensive Player of the Year

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He exploded onto the national radar after a breakthrough season in which he became Kansas football's first unanimous All-Big 12 Conference First Team member.

Receiver James Washington, running back Justice Hill, lineman Zachary Crabtree and safety Tre Flowers are on the Preseason All-Big 12 Football Team, the conference announced Wednesday. After downing Oklahoma State 38-20 in the Big 12 finale to win the league crown, OU beat Auburn 35-19 in the Sugar Bowl and finished No. 3 in the Amway Coaches Poll and No. 5 in the AP Top 25 Poll. Injured in the preseason, Armstrong did not reach 100 percent until the third week of the season, when he began becoming a player opposing offenses game-planned around. An Iowa State ground game up the middle in the next game limited Armstrong to four tackles. Wren, a redshirt senior is one of 71 preseason nominees, including eight from the Big 12, for the 2017 Rimington Trophy, recognizing the best center in college football.

Kansas defensive lineman Dorance Armstrong Jr. and Oklahoma offensive lineman Orlando Brown were the other two unanimous selections besides Washington.

The West Virginia University football team found itself Thursday morning in a very similar spot in the Big 12 preseason poll compared to this time a year ago.

Oklahoma was projected to win the Big 12 title for the 2017-18 season by the media Thursday. FOX23 News will have live coverage from the event on both days. Kansas State, which picked up the other first-place vote, totaled 231 points and was followed by Texas (213 points), TCU (202), West Virginia (183), Baylor (129), Texas Tech (85), Iowa State (83) and Kansas (37).

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