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December 10, 2008The weekly shootouts in the Big 12 emerged as the major storyline in college football, so it should come as no surprise that offensive playmakers from that conference dominate the Rivals.com All-America team.
Big 12 players make up half the first-team offense and nearly half of the second-team offense. The Big 12 ended up with 13 All-Americans on offense, three on defense and two on special teams to tie the SEC with 18 overall selections on our three-deep squad.
Iowa running back Shonn Greene is the only first-team skill-position player on offense who doesn't play for a Big 12 school. The Big 12 produced one first-team running back (Oklahoma State's Kendall Hunter), the first- and second-team quarterbacks (Oklahoma's Sam Bradford and Texas' Colt McCoy), the first- and second-team tight ends (Oklahoma's Jermaine Gresham and Missouri's Chase Coffman), both first-team receivers (Texas Tech's Michael Crabtree and Missouri's Jeremy Maclin) and one second-team receiver (Oklahoma State's Dez Bryant).
Alabama boasted the most overall All-America selections with six. The Crimson Tide contingent included three first-teamers: offensive tackle Andre Smith, defensive tackle Terrence Cody and free safety Rashad Johnson.
The Tide was closely followed by the two representatives in the BCS Championship Game.
Florida had five overall selections, including three first-teamers: all-purpose player Percy Harvin, linebacker Brandon Spikes and punt returner Brandon James. Oklahoma had four All-Americans, and they all made the first team: Bradford, Gresham, guard Duke Robinson and defensive tackle Gerald McCoy.
Oklahoma State, Penn State and USC also had four All-America selections each. Cincinnati, Iowa, Missouri, Ole Miss and Texas produced three apiece. Boston College, BYU, Florida State, Ohio State, Oregon, Pittsburgh, Rice, Texas Tech, Utah and Wake Forest each had two.