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Jenkins Wins the Thorpe Award

Ohio State's Malcolm Jenkins went home with the Thorpe Award, handed out to the best* defensive back in the nation. This is a typical ESPN "Press release plus", doling out just a splash of biography to go with the news:

"He's put so much work into this, so much heart into it," said Taver Johnson, Jenkins' cornerbacks coach. "He would say first and foremost that he wouldn't be here without his teammates. We're truly going to miss him."

"No one was really around. It was the offseason, and he was in there watching film," Johnson said. "That showed me right there the type of ambition and the type of young man that this guy is."

Johnson, who was hired at Ohio State in March of 2007, said he knew immediately that he had a special player in Jenkins.

That, in a nutshell, is a Tim Ruskell player. Leaving the #4 pick argument alone, the evidence points to Malcolm Jenkins as a talent, a team guy, and a hard worker. Whether or not the Hawks draft him is another story entirely, but  the list of former Thorpe winners is quite a group.

*In the opinion of a bunch of old people

Year Player School
1986 Thomas Everett Baylor
1987 (tie) Bennie Blades Miami
Rickey Dixon Oklahoma
1988 Deion Sanders Florida State
1989 Mark Carrier USC
1990 Darryll Lewis Arizona
1991 Terrell Buckley Florida State
1992 Deon Figures Colorado
1993 Antonio Langham Alabama
1994 Chris Hudson Colorado
1995 Greg Myers Colorado State
1996 Lawrence Wright Florida
1997 Charles Woodson Michigan
1998 Antoine Winfield Ohio State
1999 Tyrone Carter Minnesota
2000 Jamar Fletcher Wisconsin
2001 Roy Williams Oklahoma
2002 Terence Newman Kansas State
2003 Derrick Strait Oklahoma
2004 Carlos Rogers Auburn
2005 Michael Huff Texas
2006 Aaron Ross Texas
2007 Antoine Cason Arizona
2008 Malcolm Jenkins Ohio State