Teddy Bridgewater Named Big East Rookie Of The Year, Strong Snubbed

The honors (and babies) continue to roll in for Louisville quarterback Teddy Bridgewater.

Earlier today Bridgewater was named the Big East's Rookie of the Year. He joins Hakeem Smith (2010) and Victor Anderson (2008) as Cardinals who have earned the award over the past four seasons.

Bridgewater is the third Louisville player in the last four years to be named BIG EAST Rookie of the Year, joining a pair of teammates – running back Victor Anderson, who was selected in 2008, and safety Hakeem Smith, who was chosen last year. Bridgewater became Louisville’s starting quarterback in the fourth game of the season and led the Cardinals to five wins in their last six games to earn a share of the BIG EAST championship. He enters the postseason ranked third in the BIG EAST in pass efficiency rating (136.1) after throwing for 1,855 yards and 12 touchdowns in the regular season.

Bridgewater taking home the award wasn't much of a surprise. Charlie Strong not being named the Big East's Coach of the Year turned a few more heads in The Ville. That honor went to Cincinnati's Butch Jones, whose team finished the year tied atop the standings with U of L and West Virginia. The Bearcats, who can lay claim to Big East Offensive Player of the Year Isaiah Pead, were picked to finish fifth in the conference at the start of the season. Louisville was picked to finish seventh.

This would have been a post all to itself, but Eric Crawford has already said pretty much everything I would have and done so far more eloquently.

But Jones did have the league’s offensive player of the year in Isaiah Pead. He had the co-defensive player of the year in DT Derek Wolfe. Both are seniors.

Know how many upperclassmen Jones started on defense? Ten. How many on offense? Seven — even without injured quarterback Zach Collaros.

Know how many upperclassmen Charlie Strong started on defense in the season finale at South Florida? Four, and one was a first-year transfer. He started only five on offense. The rest were freshmen and sophomores — in fact, Strong started nearly as many freshmen (8) as Jones had on his 51-man depth chart (9).

If that weren't enough, the conference co-champion Cardinals who, again, were picked to finish seventh in the league before the season, had just two players (Adrian Bushell, Hakeem Smith) named first team All-Big East and just one (Dexter Heyman) named to the league's second team.

I generally don't get upset about things of this nature, but Heyman not being named to the first team is a travesty. He was, without question, one of the five best defensive players in the league this season, and there were several members of the media who thought he had an outside shot at being named Big East Defensive Player of the Year.

Anyway, here's your (light on Cards) full rundown of Big East postseason awards:

BIG EAST CONFERENCE OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR

Isaiah Pead, RB, Cincinnati (Sr., Columbus, Ohio)

BIG EAST CONFERENCE DEFENSIVE PLAYERS OF THE YEAR

Derek Wolfe, DT, Cincinnati (Sr., Lisbon, Ohio)

Khaseem Greene, LB, Rutgers (Jr., Elizabeth, N.J.)

BIG EAST CONFERENCE SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYER OF THE YEAR

Tavon Austin, WR, West Virginia (Jr., Baltimore, Md.)

BIG EAST CONFERENCE ROOKIE OF THE YEAR

Teddy Bridgewater, QB, Louisville (Fr., Miami, Fla.)

BIG EAST CONFERENCE COACH OF THE YEAR

Butch Jones, Cincinnati

ALL-BIG EAST CONFERENCE FIRST TEAM

OFFENSE

Pos.

Player

School

Cl.

Ht.

Wt.

Hometown/High School

WR

Mohamed Sanu *

Rutgers

Jr.

6-2

215

South Brunswick, N.J./South Brunswick

WR

Tavon Austin

West Virginia

So.

5-9

174

Baltimore, Md./Dunbar

OT

Justin Pugh

Syracuse

Jr.

6-6

299

Holland, Pa./Council Rock South

OT

Don Barclay

West Virginia

Sr.

6-4

305

Cranberry Township, Pa./Seneca Valley

OG

Randy Martinez

Cincinnati

Sr.

6-1

290

Teaneck, N.J./Teaneck

OG

Art Forst

Rutgers

Sr.

6-8

310

Manasquan, N.J./Manasquan

OG

Andrew Tiller

Syracuse

Sr.

6-5

328

Brentwood, N.Y./Central Islip

C

Moe Petrus

Connecticut

Sr.

6-2

302

St. Laurent, Que./Vanier Prep

TE

Nick Provo

Syracuse

Sr.

6-4

246

West Palm Beach, Fla./John I. Leonard

QB

Geno Smith

West Virginia

Jr.

6-3

210

Miami, Fla./Miramar

RB

Isaiah Pead *

Cincinnati

Sr.

5-11

198

Columbus, Ohio/Eastmoor Academy

RB

Ray Graham

Pittsburgh

Jr.

5-9

195

Elizabeth, N.J./Elizabeth

RB

Antwon Bailey

Syracuse

Sr.

5-7

197

Landover, Md./Saint Johns College

K

Dave Teggart

Connecticut

Sr.

6-0

209

Northborough, Mass./Algonqun

RS

Tavon Austin *

West Virginia

So.

5-9

173

Baltimore, Md./Dunbar

DEFENSE

Pos.

Player

School

Cl.

Ht.

Wt.

Hometown/High School

DL

Derek Wolfe

Cincinnati

Sr.

6-5

300

Lisbon, Ohio/Beaver Local

DL

Kendall Reyes

Connecticut

Sr.

6-4

287

Nashua, N.H./Nashua North

DL

Chandler Jones

Syracuse

Sr.

6-5

247

Endicott, N.Y./Union-Endicott

DL

Bruce Irvin

West Virginia

Sr.

6-3

236

Atlanta, Ga./Mt. San Antonio CC

LB

JK Schaffer

Cincinnati

Sr.

6-1

232

Cincinnati, Ohio/LaSalle

LB

Khaseem Greene

Rutgers

Jr.

6-1

220

Elizabeth, N.J./Avon Old Farms

LB

Najee Goode

West Virginia

Sr.

6-1

239

Cleveland, Ohio/Benedictine

CB

Adrian Bushell

Louisville

Jr.

5-11

190

DeSoto, Texas/Cedar Valley CC

CB

Keith Tandy

West Virginia

Sr.

5-10

198

Hopkinsville, Ky./Christian County

S

Drew Frey

Cincinnati

Jr.

6-3

203

Wilmington, Ohio/Clinton-Massie

S

Hakeem Smith

Louisville

So.

6-1

183

Jonesboro, Ga./Riverdale

S

Jarred Holley

Pittsburgh

Jr.

5-10

190

Easton, Pa./Easton Area

S

Duron Harmon

Rutgers

Jr.

6-1

201

Magnolia, Del./Caesar Rodney

P

Pat O’Donnell

Cincinnati

Jr.

6-5

217

Lake Worth, Fla./Palm Beach Central

* unanimous selection

ALL-BIG EAST CONFERENCE SECOND TEAM

OFFENSE

Pos.

Player

School

Cl.

Ht.

Wt.

Hometown/High School

WR

Alec Lemon

Syracuse

Jr.

6-2

196

Crofton, Md./Arundel Senior

WR

Stedman Bailey

West Virginia

So.

5-10

192

Miramar, Fla./Miramar

OT

Alex Hoffman

Cincinnati

Sr.

6-7

299

Indianapolis, Ind./Cathedral

OT

Mike Ryan

Connecticut

Sr.

6-5

335

Tamaqua, Pa./Marian Catholic

OG

Desmond Wynn

Rutgers

Sr.

6-6

295

Bear, Del./St. Mark’s

OG

Jeremiah Warren

USF

Sr.

6-4

329

Panama City, Fla./Bay

C

Joe Madsen

West Virginia

Jr.

6-4

300

Chardon, Ohio/Chardon

QB

Zach Collaros

Cincinnati

Sr.

6-0

223

Steubenville, Ohio/Steubenville

TE

Ryan Griffin

Connecticut

Jr.

6-6

248

Londonderry, N.H./Londonderry

RB

Lyle McCombs

Connecticut

Fr.

5-8

172

Staten Island, N.Y./St. Joseph By The Sea

RB

Darrell Scott

USF

Jr.

6-1

240

Ventura, Calif./St. Bonaventure

K

Maikon Bonani

USF

Jr.

5-10

190

Lake Wales, Fla./Lake Wales

RS

Jeremy Deering

Rutgers

So.

6-2

205

Tampa, Fla./Le

DEFENSE

Pos.

Player

School

Cl.

Ht.

Wt.

Hometown/High School

DL

Trevardo Williams

Connecticut

Jr.

6-1

231

Bridgeport, Conn./Canterbury

DL

Chas Alecxih

Pittsburgh

Sr.

6-5

285

Lancaster, Pa./Penn Manor

DL

Aaron Donald

Pittsburgh

So.

6-0

270

Pittsburgh, Pa./Penn Hills

DL

Ryne Giddins

USF

So.

6-3

261

Seffner, Fla./Armwood

LB

Dexter Heyman

Louisville

Sr.

6-3

239

Louisville, Ky./Male

LB

Max Gruder

Pittsburgh

Sr.

6-2

230

Charlotte, N.C./Charlotte Country Day

LB

Marquis Spruill

Syracuse

So.

6-1

221

Hillside, N.J./Fork Union Military Academy

CB

Dwayne Gratz

Connecticut

Jr.

6-0

195

Piscataway, N.J./Piscataway

CB

Antwuan Reed

Pittsburgh

Sr.

5-10

190

Johnstown, Pa./Greater Johnstown

CB

Logan Ryan

Rutgers

So.

6-0

190

Berlin, N.J./Eastern

CB

Kayvon Webster

USF

Jr.

5-11

195

Opa Locka, Fla./Miami Monsignor Pace

S

Jerrell Young

USF

Sr.

6-1

209

St. Petersburg, Fla./Gibbs

S

Eain Smith

West Virginia

Sr.

5-11

198

Miramar, Fla./Chaminade-Madonna

P

Cole Wagner

Connecticut

So.

6-2

211

York, Pa./York Suburban

P

Justin Doerner

Rutgers

Jr.

5-9

170

Redondo Beach, Calif./Los Angeles Harbor JC

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