Posted by ESPN.com's Brian Bennett
It's time to finish up our Big East All-Nobodies team by looking to the defense.
To recap the rules: We're looking for guys who couldn't get a sniff from most major colleges but turned into stars anyway. Players like Donald Brown and Pat White don't qualify for this exercise; Brown had offers from Iowa and Wisconsin in addition to UConn, while White was recruited hard by LSU. We're talking about players who were much more under the radar coming out of high school, and who have played in the Big East the past two seasons.
DE George Selvie, South Florida: The poster boy for our All-Nobodies team. Selvie was an undersized center in high school who didn't draw much attention from scouting services or college programs. All he did was become a two-time All-American and a Big East defensive player of the year, with one more season to go.
DL Terrill Byrd, Cincinnati: Byrd jumped at the chance to go to Cincinnati over offers from Bowling Green, Kent State and Toledo. By his junior season, he was an All-American tackle.
DL Pete Tverdov, Rutgers: Richmond, Delaware and New Hampshire were among the top suitors for Tverdov before Rutgers came along. He was an anchor on the Scarlet Knights' defensive front line last year as a senior.
DE Greg Romeus, Pittsburgh: A classic late-bloomer who didn't play football until his senior year of high school, Romeus took his official visits to Akron, Central Florida and Delaware before Pitt swooped in for the steal. Going into his junior year, he figures to be one of the top defensive ends in the conference and looks like a future pro.
LB Austin Ransom, Pittsburgh: He walked onto the Panthers after not receiving any major scholarship offers. He was a special teams ace before moving into a starting role at outside linebacker his senior year.
LB Scott Lutrus, Connecticut: Lutrus' list of colleges out of high school included such powers as Massachusetts, Columbia and Penn. Yet another of Randy Edsall's gems, he was a freshman All-American and one of the top linebackers in the Big East heading into his junior year.
LB Mortty Ivy, West Virginia: Arguably the Mountaineers' best defensive player in 2008, the first team All-Big East performer chose WVU over Buffalo and Toledo.
DB Darius Butler, Connecticut: Edsall plucked the relatively-unknown Butler out of Florida, which turned out to be a coup as he developed into one of the Big East's best corners and a valuable special teams contributor. He has a chance to be a first-day NFL draft pick.
DB Trae Williams, South Florida: He wasn't ranked by the major scouting services and got looks from Central Florida and Iowa State out of high school. At South Florida, he teamed with Mike Jenkins to form the league's best cornerback duo before being drafted in the fifth round.
DB DeAngelo Smith, Cincinnati: Another under-the-radar recruit who went on to big things at Cincinnati. Smith tied for the national lead in interceptions his junior year.
DB Courtney Greene, Rutgers: A two-star recruit who originally committed to Syracuse, Greene was a freshman All-American and a three-time All-Big East selection at safety who should hear his name called in April's NFL draft.
So there you have it. You can have your four- and five-star guys. I'll take my All-Nobodies Team and feel pretty good lining up against you any day.