Clemson, S.C.—Clemson defensive tackle Christian Wilkins has been named the recipient of the Bill Willis Award as the National Defensive Lineman of the Year by the Columbus (OH) Touchdown Club. Wilkins will be honored at the organization’s annual banquet on Feb. 17.
The junior from Springfield, Mass was named a first-team All-American by the Football Coaches Association and the Sporting News and a second-team selection by Associated Press. A first-team All-ACC player, Wilkins has 47 tackles, 8.5 tackles for loss and four sacks so far this season. He also has four passes broken up and 10 quarterback pressures
He had a dominant performance in Clemson’s ACC Championship victory over Miami (FL) when he had seven tackles, 2.5 tackles for loss, a sack and two pass deflections. He was a major reason Clemson held Miami (FL) to three points and 214 yards of total offense.
The All-around player was on the preseason Watch List for nine different awards in the preseason, more than any other ACC player.
Wilkins graduates from Clemson on December 21 and will be the first Clemson scholarship player to graduate in two-and-a-half years. He was named an Academic All-District selection by the College Sports Information Directors of America this season when he had a 3.32 GPA. He has already been named to the Academic All-ACC team twice and is a favorite to be selected for a third time in 2017.