The Associated Press named their preseason All-American teams Monday afternoon, and the list features two Badgers in running back Braelon Allen and outside linebacker Nick Herbig who were both named to the AP Second team.
Braelon Allen didn’t get significant carries until October, but the then 17-year-old true freshman took the college football world by storm. By the end of the season, Allen finished the year with 1,268 yards and 12 touchdowns on just 168 carries. For you math folks that's a 6.8 yards per carry average, which tied for second in the nation. Those gaudy numbers make Allen one of the top returning backs in 2022 and a deserved All-American candidate.
One could argue that Allen should actually be on the first team, which was manned by Ohio State’s Treyvon Henderson and Texas’ Bijan Robinson. Allen finished the year with more yards than both players, and more touchdowns than Robinson while also averaging more yards per carry than him as well.
Nick Herbig had a strong season in 2021 as well and was one of the main contributors to one of the top defenses in the nation last year. In 2021, Herbig racked up 40 tackles, and was huge for the Badgers in the pass rush racking up 9 sacks to lead the team and ranked 26th in the nation.
Both Allen and Herbig are well deserving to be nominated, but I am sure it means little to either of them. Both players don’t seem like the type to care much for accolades, especially preseason ones that, frankly, don’t mean all that much. While the honors are great, Herbig and Allen are likely more focused on proving it on the field and winning football games this Fall.