MORGANTOWN, W.Va. - West Virginia's Heisman hopeful is now the Big 12 Conference's Preseason Offensive Player of the Year.
Will Grier was also one of four Mountaineers named to this year's All-Big 12 Media Preseason football team, announced by the conference Wednesday.
Senior wide receiver David Sills V, redshirt senior offensive lineman Yodny Cajuste and redshirt junior linebacker David Long Jr. were each named to the preseason all-conference team, along with Grier.
Grier is the Conference’s top returner in total offense average (328.4), passing yards per game (317.3) and passing efficiency (162.7). The 2017 Big 12 Offensive Newcomer of the Year started 11 games for West Virginia before a season-ending hand injury in the first quarter against Texas.
Sills V earned All-America honors and was a finalist for the Biletnikoff Award after finishing with 60 catches for 980 yards and tied for the nation’s lead with 18 touchdown receptions.
Cajuste has been a two-year starter and anchors the Mountaineer offensive line at the left tackle position. He was a member of an offensive line in 2017 that only allowed 4.1 tackles for loss per game, ranking No. 8 nationally and No. 1 in the Big 12. Opponents averaged only 1.5 sacks per game, ranking No. 20 in the nation. He also was part of an offensive line that paved the way for a 1,000-yard rusher, a 3,400-yard pass and two 1,000-yard receivers.
Long Jr. played in nine games in 2017 after suffering a preseason knee injury. The ProFootballFocus All-America Second Team selection finished third on the team with 76 tackles, including 56 unassisted tackles, four sacks, a team-leading 16.5 tackles for loss, six pass breakups and a fumble recovery.
The Big 12 media preseason poll will be released on Thursday, followed by the annual Big 12 Football Media Days to be conducted in Frisco, Texas on July 16-17. Stay with www.wvillustrated.com and watch our daily West Virginia Illustrated reports online and on TV for more coverage.
2018 Preseason All-Big 12 Football Team
Offensive Player of the Year: Will Grier, West Virginia, QB, 6-2, 212, Sr., Charlotte, N.C.
Defensive Player of the Year: Ben Banogu, TCU, DL, 6-4 249, Sr., McKinney, Texas
Newcomer of the Year: Brendan Radley-Hiles, Oklahoma, DB, 5-9, 186, Fr., Inglewood, Calif.
Pos Name School Ht Wt Class Hometown
QB Will Grier 3 West Virginia 6-2 212 Sr. Charlotte, N.C.
RB David Montgomery 1 Iowa State 5-11 216 Jr. Cincinnati, Ohio
RB Rodney Anderson 2 Oklahoma 6-1 220 Jr. Katy, Texas
RB Justice Hill 1 Oklahoma State 5-10 185 Jr. Tulsa, Okla.
WR Denzel Mims 2 Baylor 6-3 209 Jr. Daingerfield, Texas
WR Marquise Brown 3 Oklahoma 5-10 168 Jr. Hollywood, Fla.
WR David Sills V 1 West Virginia 6-4 204 Sr. Wilmington, Del.
TE Grant Calcaterra 3 Oklahoma 6-4 221 So. Rancho Santa Margarita, Calif.
OL Dalton Risner 1 Kansas State 6-5 300 Sr. Wiggins, Colo.
OL Bobby Evans 3 Oklahoma 6-5 301 Jr. Allen, Texas
OL Ben Powers 2 Oklahoma 6-4 313 Sr. Wichita, Kan.
OL Marcus Keyes Oklahoma State 6-3 309 Jr. Port Allen, La.
OL Yodny Cajuste 2 West Virginia 6-5 321 Sr. Miami, Fla.
PK Austin Seibert 2 Oklahoma 5-9 214 Sr. Belleville, Ill.
KR/PR KaVontae Turpin 1 TCU 5-9 157 Sr. Monroe, La.
DL JaQuan Bailey 3 Iowa State 6-2 251 Jr. Jacksonville, Fla.
DL Daniel Wise 1 Kansas 6-3 290 Sr. Lewisville, Texas
DL Jordan Brailford 2 Oklahoma State 6-3 250 Jr. Tulsa, Okla.
DL Ben Banogu 1 TCU 6-4 249 Sr McKinney, Texas
DL Breckyn Hager 3 Texas 6-3 255 Sr. Austin, Texas
LB Joe Dineen Jr. 2 Kansas 6-2 235 Sr. Lawrence, Kan.
LB Dakota Allen 2 Texas Tech 6-1 235 Sr. Humble, Texas
LB David Long Jr. 3 West Virginia 5-11 221 Jr. Cincinnati, Ohio
DB Brian Peavy 2 Iowa State 5-9 194 Sr. Houston, Texas
DB Kendall Adams Kansas State 6-1 228 Sr. Fort Worth, Texas
DB Kris Boyd Texas 6-0 195 Sr. Gilmer, Texas
DB Jah’Shawn Johnson 2 Texas Tech 5-10 185 Sr. Ennis, Texas
DB Justus Parker 2 Texas Tech 6-0 205 Jr. La Vernia, Texas
P Austin Seibert 3 Oklahoma 5-9 214 Sr. Belleville, Ill.
1 2017 All-Big 12 First Team selection
2 2017 All-Big 12 Second Team selection
3 2017 All-Big 12 Honorable Mention
*A tie created an extra running back position.