Dennis Erickson has hit the trifecta in coaching honors in the Pac-10. The first-year leader of the Arizona State program on Monday was named the conference’s coach of the year, an honor he received at Washington State (1988) and Oregon State (2000).
Erickson’s third award came for leading the Sun Devils to a 10-2 record and a share of the Pac-10 championship. No. 12 ASU plays 17th-ranked Texas in the Holiday Bowl in San Diego on Dec. 27.
“One thing that they’ve shown, week in and week out all through the season and since I got here was great heart, determination and resiliency,” Erickson said after the Sun Devils defeated Arizona on Saturday. “You don’t win 10 games without it.
“Are we the most talented team in the world? No. Are they the most resilient team I’ve ever been around? Without question. We have been able to find a way to win, however it may be.”
Erickson, whose record in 19 college seasons is 158-67-1, is on a week-long recruiting trip and was unavailable for comment on Monday.
Last December, ASU gave the 60-year-old a five-year contract worth a guaranteed $5.6 million, hopeful that he could lead the team to the rarified air he experienced at Miami (Fla.), where he won national titles in 1989 and ’91.
The Sun Devils were in heavy contention for a Bowl Championship Series berth but had to settle for the Holiday, the Pac-10’s top non-BCS bowl.
“People haven’t mentioned BCS sentences with Arizona State included (in the past),” athletic director Lisa Love said. “That in itself shows the direction we want to go.”
The All-Pac-10 teams, selected by the coaches, were announced on Monday, and ASU had four first-team selections: offensive lineman Mike Pollak, linebacker Robert James, kicker Thomas Weber and punt returner Kyle Williams. Defensive end Dexter Davis, cornerback Justin Tryon and safety Troy Nolan were second-teamers.
Southern California had a conference-best eight players on the first team. Oregon was next with five, and Arizona and ASU had four each.
Oregon quarterback Dennis Dixon is offensive player of the year, USC nose tackle Sedrick Ellis the top defensive player and Washington quarterback Jake Locker the most outstanding freshman.
Also on Monday, Weber, a finalist for the Lou Groza Award, was chosen the Pac-10’s special teams player of the week for the third time this season. Weber had two field goals against the Wildcats to bring his season total to 22 (out of 23 attempts).
2007 ALL-PACIFIC-10 CONFERENCE FOOTBALL TEAM
First Team Offense
QB Dennis Dixon, Sr., Oregon
RB Jonathan Stewart, Jr., Oregon
RB Justin Forsett, Sr., California
WR Mike Thomas, Jr., Arizona
WR Brandon Gibson, Jr., Washington State TE Fred Davis, Sr., USC OL Alex Mack, Jr., California OL Max Unger, Jr., Oregon OL Chilo Rachel, Jr., USC OL Roy Schuening, Sr., Oregon State OL Sam Baker, Sr., USC OL Mike Pollak, Sr., Arizona State
Second Team Offense
QB Alex Brink, Sr., Washington State
RB Yvenson Bernard, Sr., Oregon State
RB Louis Rankin, Sr., Washington
WR DeSean Jackson, Jr., California
WR Lavelle Hawkins, Sr., California
TE Jed Collins, Sr., Washington State
OL Geoff Schwartz, Sr., Oregon
OL Juan Garcia, Sr., Washington
OL Andy Levitre, Jr., Oregon State
OL Eben Britton, So., Arizona
OL Alex Fletcher, Jr., Stanford
OL Fenuki Tupou, Jr., Oregon
First Team Defense
DL Sedrick Ellis, Sr., USC
DL Lawrence Jackson, Sr., USC
DL Nick Reed, Jr., Oregon
DL Dorain Smith, Sr., Oregon State
LB Spencer Larsen, Sr., Arizona
LB Keith Rivers, Sr., USC
LB Robert James, Sr., Arizona State
LB Rey Maualuga, Jr., USC
DB Antoine Cason, Sr., Arizona
DB Patrick Chung, Jr., Oregon
DB Kevin Ellison, Jr., USC
DB Chris Horton, Sr., UCLA
Second Team Defense
DL Bruce Davis, Sr., UCLA
DL Dexter Davis, So., Arizona State
DL Lionel Dotson, Sr., Arizona
DL Jeff Van Orsow, Sr., Oregon State
LB Joey LaRocque, Sr., Oregon State
LB Alan Darlin, Sr., Oregon State
LB Derrick Doggett, Sr., Oregon State
LB Zack Follett, Jr., California
DB Terrell Thomas, Sr., USC
DB Justin Tryon, Sr., Arizona State
DB Brandon Hughes, Jr., Oregon State
DB Troy Nolan, Jr., Arizona State
First Team Specialists
PK Thomas Weber, Fr., Arizona State
P Keenyn Crier, Fr., Arizona
KOR Matthew Slater, Sr., UCLA
PR Kyle Williams, So., Arizona State
ST Jahvid Best, Fr., California
Second Team Specialists
PK Alexis Serna, Sr., Oregon State
P Jay Ottovegio, Sr., Stanford
KOR Jonathan Stewart, Jr., Oregon
PR DeSean Jackson, Jr., California
ST Wopamo Osaisai, Jr., Stanford
Offensive Player of the Year: Dennis Dixon, QB, Sr., Oregon
Pat Tillman Defensive Player of the Year: Sedrick Ellis, NT, Sr., USC
Freshman of the Year: Jake Locker, QB, Washington
Coach of the Year: Dennis Erickson, Arizona State
ARIZONA: PK Jason Bondzio, Jr.; OT Peter Graniello, Sr.; TE Bob Gronkowski, Fr.; DE Jason Parker, Sr.; QB Willie Tuitama, Jr.
ARIZONA STATE: WR/KR Rudy Burgess, Sr.; QB Rudy Carpenter, Jr.; OG Paul Fanaika, Jr.; WR Michael Jones, Jr.; DT Michael Marquardt, Sr.; WR Chris McGaha, So.; OT Brandon Rodd, Sr.; DE Luis Vasquez, Jr.
CALIFORNIA: FS Thomas DeCoud, Sr.; OG Brian De La Puente, Sr.; OLB Anthony Felder, Jr.; OG Mike Gibson, Sr.; WR Robert Jordan, Sr.; TE Craig Stevens, Sr.
OREGON: OLB Jerome Boyd, Jr.; CB Jairus Byrd, So.; P Josh Syria, Jr.; CB Walter Thurmond III, So.; DE Will Tukuafu, So.; WR Jaison Williams, Jr.
OREGON STATE: FS Al Afalava, Jr.; DT Curtis Coker, Sr.; C Kyle DeVan, Sr.; SS Daniel Drayton, SS; CB Gerard Lawson, Sr.; DT Gerard Lee, Sr.
STANFORD: WR Mark Bradford, Sr.; DE Pannel Egboh, Jr.; OT Chris Marinelli, So.; FB Owen Marecic, Fr.; FS Bo McNally, So.; OLB Clinton Snyder, So.
UCLA: DT Kevin Brown, Sr.; CB Trey Brown, Sr.; PK Kai Forbath, Fr.; FS Dennis Keyes, Sr.; P Aaron Perez, Jr.; CB Alterraun Verner, So.
USC: OLB Brian Cushing, Jr.; DE Everson Griffen, Fr.; CB Cary Harris, Jr.; FS Taylor Mays, So.; TB/PR Joe McKnight, Fr.; OT Drew Radovich, Sr.; C Matt Spanos, Sr.; TB Chauncey Washington, Sr.; LB Thomas Williams, Sr. WASHINGTON: QB Jake Locker, Fr.; DT Jordan Reffett, Sr.; WR Anthony Russo, Sr.
WASHINGTON STATE: FS Husain Abdullah, Sr.; WR Michael Bumpus, Sr.; OLB Andy Mattingly, So.; MLB Greg Trent, Jr.