While it wasn’t the greatest of seasons for the Michigan State Spartans, the accolades keep rolling in for a few individual players. Pro Football Focus unveiled its 2020 All-Big Ten team, and four Spartans were included.
Junior cornerback Shakur Brown earned first-team honors, which is well-deserved after a terrific breakout season in which Brown had 25 tackles, five interceptions and nine passes defended. His coverage grade of 84.2 caught the attention of the Pro Football Focus analysts.
Here is what PFF had to say about Brown:
Brown began the year in the slot before moving to the outside two games into the season. Regardless of where he lined up, he made plays.
Along with having the seventh-best coverage grade in the FBS (84.2), Brown tied for the most interceptions at the position (five).
Meanwhile, linebacker Antjuan Simmons earned second-team recognition after a highly-productive senior season. Simmons recorded 75 tackles, nine tackles for loss, one sack, two passes defended and two fumble recoveries.
Earlier today, it was announced that Brown and Simmons were also selected to the Associated Press’ All-Big Ten team second team. The two players were selected to the All-Big Ten Defensive Team, as voted by Big Ten coaches and media, as well.
There were other Spartans who made the list, too. Senior defensive end Drew Beesley earned third-team honors from PFF. He recorded 27 tackles, 5.5 tackles for loss, three sacks, two passes defended and a forced fumble. It is nice to see Beesley get recognized after a very solid senior season.
Redshirt sophomore wide receiver Jayden Reed also made PFF’s All-Big Ten team, but somewhat surprisingly if you’ve watched Michigan State play special teams this season, he received third-team honors as a kick/punt returner. That said, while MSU’s special team units struggled overall, Reed was solid with 16 kick returns for 329 yards (20.6 yards per return). He averaged 47 kick return yards per game, and had his longest return go for 39 yards. Reed also had two punt returns for 14 yards. Reed was a weapon for the Spartans in the receiving game as well, catching 33 passes for 407 yards with three touchdowns.
Congratulations to these four Spartans for this much-deserved honor.