Prosch, Mercilus Named Pro Football Weekly All-Americans
Dec. 12, 2011
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - University of Illinois sophomore fullback Jay Prosch was named to the Pro Football Weekly All-America first team and junior defensive end Whitney Mercilus was an honorable mention selection, the publication announced Monday. It is the first career honor for Prosch, who has established himself as a consistent force in the Illini run game the past two seasons, and it is Mercilus' seventh All-America honor this season.
Prosch played in all 12 of Illinois' games in 2011, starting five. He helped pave the way for an Illini rushing attack that has been one of the top three in the Big Ten over the past two seasons, as Illinois has averaged 210.12 rushing yards per game during that span. Mercilus leads the nation in sacks (14.5), sacks per game (1.21) and forced fumbles (9). He also is tied for fifth in the nation and leads the Big Ten in tackles for loss with 19.5.
PFW's selection of its All-America team is based on considerable feedback from NFL evaluators, taking into consideration a player's pure talent and contribution to his team. It also places a premium on true talent and draft value in the selection process, and requires that honorees contributed for the bulk of the season.
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