Four Illini Gridders Earn All-America Honors
Dec. 16, 2008
Multiple All-America teams have been released this week with four University of Illinois football players earning honors. Junior cornerback Vontae Davis was named to the Rivals.com third-team, senior linebacker Brit Miller was a third-team pick and sophomore receiver Arrelious Benn was fourth-team by Phil Steele Magazine. Additionally, true-freshman offensive tackle Jeff Allen earned second-team Freshman All-America accolades from The Sporting News.
Miller was the Big Ten leader in tackles, leading to first-team All-Big Ten honors. He was the top tackler on the Illini squad, while also leading in tackles for loss and quarterback sacks. He scored his first defensive touchdown on a 27-yard fumble return. Davis, a two-time first-team All-Big Ten selection, finished second on the team in tackles with 78 and ranked 15th in the Big Ten. He led the team in passes broken up and interceptions, while also recording seven tackles for loss and three forced fumbles. He was a Lott Award semifinalist and a 2008 Playboy All-American.
Benn, the 2008 Illinois Most Valuable Player, topped the 1,000-yard receiving mark for the first time in his career and the first time for an Illini since 2002. It was the fifth-best single season performance for an Illinois receiver. He also put together a string of four consecutive 100-yard games, for the first time in school history. His performance earned him first-team All-Big Ten honors. Allen became the first true-freshman to start on the offensive line since the 1997 season, when he started Big Ten play at right tackle. He finished the year with nine starts and 628 snaps. He helped the Illini offense lead the Big Ten in passing and rank second in total offense.