After announcing All-Big Ten teams on special teams and on the defensive side of the ball on Tuesday, the Big Ten Conference switched it’s focused to the offense on Wednesday. Two Michigan State Spartans earned the honors, while several others were named as honorable mention.
To absolutely nobody’s surprise, running back Kenneth Walker III earned All-Big Ten first-team recognition by both the coaches and media. He was the only Spartan to make the first-team. Walker also won the conference’s Ameche-Dayne Running Back of the Year award, is a finalist for both the Doak Walker Award and Maxwell Award (and possibly the Heisman Trophy as well) and was named to the All-Big Ten first-team by Pro Football Focus.
Walker finished the 2021 regular season with 1,636 yards (leads all Power Five running backs and is second most in FBS) on 263 carries (6.22 yards per carry) and 18 touchdowns (tied for fifth in FBS). He also leads the country in rushing yards after contact with 1,154 yards, 20-plus yard carries (21) and forced missed tackles (89).
Jayden Reed earned third-team All-Big Ten honors on offense from the coaches and media, after earning third-team honors as a kick/punt returner on Tuesday. He leads the Spartans with 53 catches for 956 yards (ranking in the top-10 in the Big Ten in both categories) and eight receiving touchdowns (fourth in the Big Ten). He also averages 17.8 yards per reception, the third-most in the conference. Reed is also a Paul Hornung Award finalist, and PFF named Reed second-team All-Big Ten as a wide receiver.
Additionally, several other Michigan State players earned All-Big honorable mentions: center Matt Allen (coaches and media), offensive tackle AJ Arcuri (media), offensive guard Blake Bueter (media), offensive guard J.D. Duplain (media), tight end Connor Heyward (coaches and media), offensive tackle Jarrett Horst (coaches and media), offensive guard/offensive tackle Kevin Jarvis (media), wide receiver Jalen Nailor (media) and quarterback Payton Thorne (coaches and media).