Texas defensive lineman Sam Acho is the Big 12 Sportsperson of the Year, along with Baylor women's basketball player Melissa Jones.
Last season, Acho led the Longhorns with nine sacks and 17 tackles for loss, and accompanied his parents to their native country of Nigeria on mission trips. (Here's video with Acho and yours truly talking about his experiences during the trip.) He was drafted by the Arizona Cardinals in the fourth round of April's NFL Draft.
He helped with medical care on the trips, and worked in the community speaking about the importance of education. He taught English as a second language and helped build a home in Dallas with Habitat for Humanity. Acho also raise funds in Dallas before the 2009 and 2010 Nigeria trips.
The honors business major had a 3.55 GPA and was a three-time Academic All-Big 12 performer. Acho joins Ahmard Hall (2004-05) as the second Longhorn to win the award since the Big 12 began giving it out in 2000-01.
Sporting News named Acho one of the sports "20 smartest athletes," and in December he won the Campbell Trophy, also known as the Academic Heisman, given to college football's top student-athlete. Acho was also named to the Allstate AFCA Good Works team last fall.