“O'Connell was a key protector for an offense that threw 613 passes this season. The 6-foot-8, 354-pounder is only going to get better,” writes Sporting News.
O’Connell is also WSU’s first Sporting News All-American o-lineman in two decades. Scott Sanderson was named SN first-team All-America back in 1996.
O’Connell is in Atlanta for the Outland Trophy presentation today (4 pm, ESPN). He is one of three finalists for the award given to the nation’s best interior lineman: offense or defense.
O’Connell was named Pac-12 honorable mention when the conference handed out its awards last month
Sporting News is one of the five major All-America teams, along with Associated Press, American Football Coaches Association, Football Writers of America and the Walter Camp Football Foundation. Earlier this week he was named first-team All-American by Pro Football Focus while linemate Cole Madison was picked second team.
To be considered a consensus All-American a player must be named a first-team honoree by three of the organizations. Selection to all five makes for the rarest of the rare: unanimous first-team All-American. Jason Hanson is the only unanimous first-team All-America choice in WSU history.
For the complete Sporting News All-American team, CLICK HERE
WSU’S 1ST-TEAM ALL-AMERICAN HISTORY IN THE O-LINE
Turk Edwards - 1930
Mel Hein - 1930
Harold Ahlskog – 1930
Laurie Niemi – 1948
Geoff Reece – 1974
Dan Lynch – 1984
Mike Utley – 1988
Scott Sanderson – 1996
Derick Roche – 2002
Cody O’Connell - 2016