Tuesday, August 7, 2012
Ranking the Big 12's top 25 players: No. 19
By ESPN.com staff
Our official list of the Big 12's top 25 players entering the 2012 season marches on. Here's more on my criteria for who makes it, who doesn't, and who lands where.
The official list is locked away in a vault in an undisclosed location, but we'll be revealing one player a day leading up to the season.
Next up on the list:
No. 19: Quandre Diggs, CB, Texas
2011 numbers: Made 49 tackles (32 solo), three tackles for loss, broke up 19 passes and intercepted four passes. Also forced two fumbles. He returned 19 kicks for 371 yards (avg. 19.53 yards) and returned nine punts for 181 yards (avg. 20.11 yards).
Most recent ranking: Diggs was unranked in our postseason list of the Big 12's top 25 players.
Making the case for Diggs: Diggs showed up early last spring and displayed a ton of potential. By fall, he made good on those hopes he could one day blossom into an All-American. Diggs, the younger brother of San Diego Charger and former Longhorn Quentin Jammer (a unanimous All-American in his day), stepped in as a true freshman and started 11 games, unheard of for the Longhorns.
Along the way, he nabbed four picks to lead the team and finish in a tie for fourth place in the league. That included interceptions in comeback wins over BYU and Texas A&M, and another in a shutout win over California to close the season in the Holiday Bowl. His 19 PBUs were third-most in college football. And this guy's supposed to be a true freshman? Unbelievable.
He'll return as a sophomore as one of the Big 12's best defensive backs, and the 5-foot-10, 200-pound Angleton, Texas native plays much bigger than his size, more than willing to challenge the bigger receivers across the Big 12.
The rest of the list:
- No. 25: Justin Gilbert, CB/KR, Oklahoma State
- No. 24: Ben Habern, C, Oklahoma
- No. 23: Terrance Williams, WR, Baylor
- No. 22: Josh Boyce, WR, TCU
- No. 21: Cyril Richardson, OL, Baylor
- No. 20: Trey Millard, FB/TE, Oklahoma