MANHATTAN, Kan. – With four on the first team to tie for second in the league, five Kansas State football players picked up honors from the Associated Press on Fridayas they were named to the organization’s All-Big 12 football team.
The Wildcats’ four first-team members included are offensive lineman Dalton Risner, place kicker Matthew McCrane, defensive tackle Will Geary and defensive backD.J. Reed. Punter Nick Walsh was named to the second team, while Reed was a second team all-purpose player.
Risner, McCrane, Geary and Reed were also named First Team All-Big 12 performers by the league’s coaches last week as they each swept all-conference honors for the first time in their careers. Geary was a First Team All-Big 12 honoree from the Associated Press for a third-straight season as he became the first Wildcat interior defensive lineman since Reggie Singletaryin 1981-83 to earn three-consecutive first team accolades.
A second-team honoree by the AP in 2016, Risner helped spearhead an offensive line that helped the Wildcats finish the regular season second in the Big 12 in rushing yards per game (186.7) and yards per carry (4.8), while they ranked fourth in rushing touchdowns (25). K-State has recorded six games with at least 200 rushing yards this year, including a 268-yard output against then-No. 9 Oklahoma and 217 yards in a win at No. 10 Oklahoma State.
Reed, a product of Bakersfield, California, enters the bowl season ranked second in the Big 12 and 21st nationally in both passes defended (13) and interceptions (4). Over a three-game span against Kansas, Texas Tech and West Virginia, Reed totaled seven passes defended and two interceptions.
Named a Second Team All-American kick returner by the Walter Camp Football Foundation on Thursday, Reed’s inclusion as an all-purpose player marks the sixth time in the last seven years a Wildcat has been honored at the position by the Associated Press. Reed ranks in the top 10 nationally in kickoff-return average (2nd; 35.3), punt-return average (2nd; 17.1) and punt-return touchdowns (10th; 1). He currently ranks first in Big 12 history in single-season kickoff return average and sixth in school history in punt return average.
McCrane, a native of Brownwood, Texas, leads the Big 12 and ranks seventh nationally by making 21 of his 26 field goal attempts in addition to all 43 of his extra points. The school’s career record holder with 57 field goals, McCrane is also first in school history in career field goal (86.4) and extra point (99.2) percentage, while he is third in career points (299).
Geary produced his best season as a senior with 43 tackles, 9.0 tackles for loss and 4.5 sacks, the latter two setting career highs. A product of Topeka, Kansas, Geary has 25.0 TFLs and 163 career tackles rank fourth and 12th, respectively, in school history among interior defensive linemen.
A native of Lyndon, Kansas, Walsh ranks second in the Big 12 with a 43.7-yard average – a mark that currently ranks fifth in school history – while he has seen a career-best 20 punts downed inside the opponents’ 20-yard line. His career average of 42.3 yards per punt ranks third in K-State history, while he is also fourth in both career yards (9,058) and attempts (54).
Kansas State rides momentum created by winning four of its last five games into the 2017 Cactus Bowl against UCLA on Tuesday, December 26. The game, which kicks off at 8 p.m. (CT), will be shown nationally on ESPN. Fans can order bowl tickets through the K-State Bowl Information page by clicking here.
Associated Press All-Big 12 Teams (Kansas State)
First Team: Dalton Risner (OL), Matthew McCrane (PK), Will Geary (DT), D.J. Reed (DB).
Second Team: D.J. Reed (All-Purpose), Nick Walsh (P).
Asst. Director/Athletics Communications | K-State Athletics