Last month, Athlon released its preseason All-Big 12 First-Team that featured two Iowa State players, running back Mike Warren and wide receiver Allen Lazard. But once it’s time to release the real All-Big 12 First-Team roster in late December, Big 12 fans might see an Iowa State defender on there in the form of defensive tackle Demond Tucker.
Tucker had a phenomenal first season in Ames where the defensive tackle recorded 28 tackles, 13 tackles for a loss and six sacks on his way to earning Big 12 Defensive Newcomer of the Year and Second-Team All-Big 12 according to the Associated Press.
So how will Tucker go from Second-Team to First-Team in 2016?
Take a look at the 2015 First-Team All-Big 12 roster. Ten out of the 11 members on the defensive side of that list are gone due to graduation or leaving early for the NFL Draft. The lone returning member is TCU’s defensive end Josh Carraway.
If Tucker improves the way that Iowa State fans are hopeful he will, a prestigious spot on the All-Big 12 team could be up for grabs.