Big Ten rankings: No. 10, Ryan Kerrigan

The Big Ten preseason player rankings, based on past performance and 2010 potential, continue with ...

No. 10: Ryan Kerrigan, DE, Purdue, 6-4, 263

2009 numbers: Led the Big Ten and ranked third nationally in sacks with 13; led the nation and tied a team record with seven forced fumbles; finished fourth in the Big Ten and tied for eighth nationally in tackles for loss per game (1.54); ranked fourth on the team in tackles with 66.

Most recent ranking: No. 16 in the 2009 postseason player rankings.

Making the case for Kerrigan: The Big Ten has no shortage of outstanding defensive ends, but Kerrigan might be the best pure pass-rusher of the bunch. He averaged more than a sack per game in 2009, earning first-team All-Big Ten honors from the media, and recorded multiple tackles for loss in seven contests. Kerrigan had the game of his life against Big Ten champ Ohio State, earning National Defensive Player of the Week honors after recording three sacks, four tackles for loss, two forced fumbles and a fumble recovery. Buckeyes quarterback Terrelle Pryor won't soon forget him. Kerrigan might not get the pub that Cameron Heyward and Adrian Clayborn do, but he's just as disruptive to quarterbacks and makes a ton of plays, as evidenced by his seven forced fumbles. Unassuming off the field, Kerrigan is known for his relentless motor on it and will take on a greater leadership role as a co-captain for the Boilermakers in 2010.

The rundown

  • No. 25: Wisconsin DE J.J. Watt

  • No. 24: Illinois RB Mikel LeShoure

  • No. 23: Iowa DT Karl Klug

  • No. 22: Northwestern LB Quentin Davie

  • No. 21: Michigan State QB Kirk Cousins

  • No. 20: Ohio State LB Brian Rolle

  • No. 19: Wisconsin QB Scott Tolzien

  • No. 18: Iowa QB Ricky Stanzi

  • No. 17: Ohio State WR DeVier Posey

  • No. 16: Wisconsin LB Chris Borland

  • No. 15: Wisconsin G/C John Moffitt

  • No. 14: Indiana WR Tandon Doss

  • No. 13: Purdue WR Keith Smith

  • No. 12: Ohio State LB Ross Homan

  • No. 11: Wisconsin LT Gabe Carimi