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Wisconsin football: Joe Schobert, Michael Caputo, Vince Biegel earn All-Big Ten honors

The Badgers' defensive players were honored with all-conference selections on Monday.

Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

Senior outside linebacker Joe Schobert wasn't the only Wisconsin defensive player honored by Big Ten Conference coaches and media on Monday.

Along with the former walk-on, who received the 2016 Butkus-Fitzgerald Linebacker of the Year and first team All-Big Ten honors, teammates Michael Caputo and Vince Biegel were selected to consensus second and third-team all-conference honors.

Caputo, a redshirt senior safety and team captain who's started the past three seasons, ranks fourth on the team in tackles with 58 and second in forced fumbles with two. He's tied with fellow safety Leo Musso for second on the team in interceptions with two.

Biegel trails only Schobert for the team lead in sacks and tackles for loss with eight and 14, respectively. The redshirt junior outside linebacker has also tallied seven quarterback hurries, again only trailing his "odd couple" partner in crime in Schobert in that category. The duo's combined for 32.5 tackles for loss and 16.5 sacks.

Other Badgers from defensive coordinator Dave Aranda's defense were All-Big Ten honorable mention selections. Among them included:

  • Consensus selection by both coaches and media: redshirt senior safety Tanner McEvoy
  • Coaches' selections: redshirt freshman inside linebacker T.J. Edwards, redshirt senior cornerback Darius Hillary
  • Media selections: redshirt sophomore defensive end Chikwe Obasih, junior cornerback Sojourn Shelton
Senior fullback Derek Watt was honored as UW's recipient of the Big Ten Sportsmanship Award.

Here's the full press release from the Wisconsin athletic department:

Linebacker of the Year Schobert leads Badgers' All-Big Ten trio

Nation's No. 1-ranked defense represented by Schobert, Caputo, Biegel on all-conference team

Nov. 30, 2015

• On the Web:

MADISON, Wis. - Led by the league's top linebacker, three key components of Wisconsin's No. 1-ranked defense were named All-Big Ten on Monday.

Senior OLB Joe Schobert was named Butkus-Fitzgerald Linebacker of the Year and was a consensus first-team All-Big Ten selection, while senior S Michael Caputo earned consensus second-team honors and junior OLB Vince Biegel was named to the All-Big Ten third team by both the league's coaches and media.

Another five Badgers earned honorable mention All-Big Ten recognition: freshman ILB T.J. Edwards (coaches), senior CB Darius Hillary (coaches), senior S Tanner McEvoy (consensus), sophomore DE Chikwe Obasih (media) and junior CB Sojourn Shelton (media).

Selections on the offensive side of the ball will be announced Tuesday from 5-6 p.m. (CT) on BTN.

Schobert has racked up 18.5 tackles for loss on the season, ranking in a tie for No. 7 nationally and third among Big Ten players. His 9.5 sacks rank him in a tie for 11th nationally and third in the conference. Schobert also has tied UW's single-season record for forced fumbles with five, a total that ranks him No. 2 nationally this season, and has recorded 14 quarterback hurries. He tallied the first interception of his career last Saturday at Minnesota.

Schobert is the Badgers' second recipient of the Butkus-Fitzgerald award, joining 2013 honoree Chris Borland. He was a consensus honorable mention All-Big Ten selection last season.

Wisconsin's team captain, Caputo is a consensus second-team All-Big Ten pick for the second straight season. He owns a pair of interceptions and has forced two fumbles on the season. He also has recorded six pass breakups and ranks fourth on the team with 58 total tackles.

Adding in 8.0 sacks of his own, Biegel has combined with Schobert to record 17.5, the most by any linebacker duo in the FBS. Biegel also owns 14.0 tackles for loss and ranks third among UW players with 64 total stops on the season. It's the second-consecutive All-Big Ten honor for Biegel, who earned a spot on the media's second team last season.

Together, the Badgers' honorees have contributed to a unit that leads the nation in scoring defense, allowing just 13.1 points per game. UW has allowed an average of 267.1 yards per game to rank No. 3 nationally in total defense, with the Badgers ranking No. 5 in rushing defense (97.9 ypg) and No. 6 in passing defense (169.2 ypg).

Also Monday, senior FB Derek Watt was named UW's recipient of the Big Ten Sportsmanship Award.

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