Big East awards tracker

November, 13, 2012
11/13/12
4:00
PM ET
With the regular season winding to a close, let's take a look at where some of the races stand for individual awards in the Big East.

Offensive Player of the Year

1. Teddy Bridgewater, QB, Louisville. Something tells me there are not going to be any questions about the winner of this award this season. Bridgewater has been the best offensive player in the Big East this season by a mile. He has been selected as a semifinalist for the Davey O'Brien Award, given to the best quarterback in the nation, and got a little Heisman buzz throughout the year. In 10 games, Bridgewater has thrown for 2,858 yards and 21 touchdowns with five interceptions, and is No. 5 in the nation in passing efficiency.

2. George Winn, RB, Cincinnati. Winn has been one of the most pleasant surprises to emerge in the Big East this season, as he leads the league in rushing on the heels of 2011 Big East Offensive Player of the Year Isaiah Pead doing the same. Winn needs 20 yards to reach 1,000 on the season. If you take a look at his numbers, he is averaging more yards per carry AND more yards per game than Pead.

3. Ryan Nassib, QB, Syracuse. Nassib is having a career year in his final season, leading the Big East in passing, while throwing for 21 touchdowns and eight interceptions. He is the first Syracuse quarterback to pass for 3,000 yards in a season and set the school's single-season record for total offense in the process. Last week against Louisville, he became the Big East career completions leader.

Defensive Player of the Year

1. Khaseem Greene, LB, Rutgers. Yes, I was wrong in my midseason report -- Greene should win this award pretty easily for the second straight season. He has played even better than he did a year ago, when he shared the award with Derek Wolfe of Cincinnati. Greene has 96 total tackles, and leads the nation in forced fumbles with six.

2. Yawin Smallwood, LB, UConn. Smallwood was my midseason choice for defensive player of the year. There is no doubt he has had an outstanding season, reaching the 100-tackle mark, with four sacks and a Big East-leading 13 tackles for loss.

3. Greg Blair, LB, Cincinnati. Blair has been a beast in the middle for the Bearcats this season, and I believe has played even better since Walter Stewart went down with a career-ending injury. Blair has a team-high 89 tackles, 4.5 for loss, two interceptions and five pass breakups.

Coach of the Year

1. Charlie Strong, Louisville. Though many expected the Cardinals to win the Big East, this team probably surprised some by setting the school record with a 9-0 start and a No. 9 ranking in the BCS standings. The loss to Syracuse hurts, but the Big East is still there for the taking.

2. Kyle Flood, Rutgers. Flood has led this team into the Top 25 in his first year as a head coach, and that says something about him and how he has kept the program running pretty smoothly. Rutgers is the only unbeaten team remaining in Big East play.

3. Butch Jones, Cincinnati. You could make the argument that the reigning Big East coach of the year is doing his best coaching job this season when you look at how the team has performed without its key senior leaders from 2011. Plus, Cincinnati has lost Walter Stewart and several players in the secondary, has made a quarterback change and is still in the middle of the Big East race.

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