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November 26, 2012
Short tops Purdue's All-Big Ten honorees
Kawann Short is one of the Big Ten's best players.
League coaches and media who cover the conference decided it on Monday.
Short was selected as a first-team all-league pick by both after recording 42 tackles, including 14.5 for loss, and six sacks during his senior season.
It wasn't a career-best season for Short, who opted to return to Purdue despite being projected as a third-round pick after his junior season. But it was a good one especially considering his condition: Short battled through knee, shoulder, hip and ankle injuries this season, defensive line coach Kevin Wolthausen said.
Still, Wolthausen has said he considers Short "as good as there is" at his position.
Defensive coordinator Tim Tibesar also spoke highly of Short earlier this month after it was announced Short would play in the Senior Bowl.
"I think he's been a fantastic player for us," Tibesar said. "He's shown tremendous character playing through injuries. There are a lot of guys who have his professional football potential that when they get injured, they don't want to play. He has never wavered in trying to help this team to win. He has not been at full strength, but he has certainly showed a tremendous amount of heart and gone out and played through injury and that shows great character."
Short was Purdue's only first-team selection on Monday, but the Boilermakers had other representation on the all-league teams.
Junior cornerback Ricardo Allen was on the coaches' second team, and senior cornerback Josh Johnson landed on the media's second team.
Johnson was third on the team in tackles (58) to go with 16 pass breakups - he needs four in the bowl game to tie the all-time record at Purdue - three interceptions and three forced fumbles.
Before Purdue's game against Indiana, Johnson said he felt like he had an all-conference season.
"I try to go out and play big and whoever I'm going against, I try to shut them down," he said. "I feel like I've been doing a great job. I just want to show everybody that I still have more."
Allen, who always has been the "name" DB in Purdue's secondary despite Johnson's rising status, was slowed some this season by an ankle and shin injury. That kept him from performing to his potential, but he still had 44 tackles, including four for loss, returned his only interception for a touchdown and had three PBUs.
"It's kind of hard to make a lot of plays when people game plan around you," he said earlier this month. "I feel like sometimes people game plan not to throw the ball at me. It's hard. But I think I'm having an all right season."
On the coaches' list, Johnson, receiver Antavian Edison (57 receptions, 625 yards, eight TDs) and punter Cody Webster (42.5 avg., 17 punts 50-plus yards) were honorable mention.
For the media, Allen, Edison, Webster and safety Landon Feichter (team-high 76 tackles, team-high four interceptions) were honorable mention picks.
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