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Three offensive players earn All-Big Ten honors for the Badgers

The Badgers saw two of their top playmakers and an offensive lineman earn honors.

Syndication: The Columbus Dispatch Mark Hoffman/Milwaukee Journal Sentinel / USA TODAY NETWORK

The Big Ten conference announced the 2023 All-Big Ten offensive awards, as well as select individual honors on Wednesday, and the Wisconsin Badgers saw a few players earn honors.

Running back Braelon Allen led the charge, being named to the All-Big Ten second team by the media and third team by the coaches.

Allen rushed for 984 yards and 12 touchdowns on 5.4 yards per carry in 2023 while missing a game, ranking second in the Big Ten in rushing yards and rushing touchdowns.

Wideout Will Pauling was named an All-Big Ten third teamer by the coaches, while earning an honorable mention by the media.

Pauling was third in receptions (66), sixth in receiving yards (694), and 12th in receiving touchdowns (4).

Center Tanor Bortolini earned All-Big Ten third team honors by the media, while being listed as an honorable mention by the coaches.

My Thoughts

For the most part, I thought the coaches and media got the selections right.

While being a strong, underrated blocker for the majority of the year, Bortolini was hurt by poor snaps, as well as being classified as a center, which has only three total All-Big Ten spots, whereas guards have six.

Pauling was an elite playmaker for the Badgers and was atop the Big Ten in several statistical categories.

However, there were a variety of playmakers across the board at receiver, and Pauling’s limited explosive plays due to his role on offense, lower yards per catch, and four touchdowns likely dragged him down some boards.

But, my lone issue comes with Braelon Allen’s honors, specifically on the coaches side.

I expected Allen to earn second-team honors, with Ohio State’s TreVeyon Henderson, Rutgers’s Kyle Monangai, and Michigan’s Blake Corum ahead of him on my list.

Allen did earn All-Big Ten second-team honors on the media vote, but was moved to third-team in favor of Penn State’s Kaytron Allen on the coaches vote.

Kaytron Allen is a very talented back for Penn State, but I was surprised by the selection, as Braelon Allen had 133 more rushing yards, despite playing one less game, while scoring six more touchdowns and catching 14 more passes through the air, albeit on worse efficiency there.

The two had identical efficiency on the ground, however, as Braelon Allen rushed for 5.4 yards per carry, while Kaytron Allen earned 5.3 yards per carry.

That was the lone surprise on my end with the All-Big Ten awards on offense, as there weren’t really any notable omissions from the three teams or the honorable mentions.