Dec. 16, 2015
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IOWA CITY, Iowa — University of Iowa defensive back Desmond King has been named to the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) All-America first team. The announcement was made Wednesday by the AFCA.
The AFCA All-America team is the fifth and final honor squad that is used in naming consensus All-Americans, and King has been named first team by all five outlets (Walter Camp, Associated Press, FWAA, Sporting News, and AFCA). He has also earned first team All-America recognition by ESPN.com, USA Today, SI.com, and College Sports Madness.
King is the 23rd Hawkeye to earn consensus All-America honors. As was the case a year ago with offensive tackle Brandon Scherff, King is a unanimous consensus selection. King is the sixth Hawkeye to earn consensus All-America honors as a junior (Calvin Jones, Reggie Roby, Larry Station, Dallas Clark, Shonn Greene). Jones and Station are the only Iowa players to earn consensus recognition twice.
King was honored as the receipient of the Jim Thorpe Award, which goes to the top defensive back in the nation, and earned the Jack Tatum Award from the Touchdown Club of Columbus. King was earlier named the Tatum-Woodson Big Ten Conference Defensive Back of the Year and was a first team All-Big Ten selection. King was also one of five finalists for the Walter Camp Player of the Year Award.
King is the first Hawkeye defensive back to earn first team All-America honors since Merton Hanks in 1990. He is the 14th Hawkeye to earn first team honors under coach Kirk Ferentz and he is the eighth Hawkeye under Ferentz to earn consensus recognition.
King (5-foot-11, 200-pounds), is a junior from Detroit, Michigan (East English Village HS). He is second in the nation with eight interceptions. King has multiple interceptions in two games, with two thefts in wins over Pittsburgh and Wisconsin. He is the first Hawkeye with multiple multi-interception games in a season since Tyler Sash in 2009.
King’s eight interceptions tie the Iowa single-season record, a mark previously reached by Heisman Trophy winner Nile Kinnick (1939) and Lou King (1981). His seventh interception of the season was returned 88 yards for a touchdown in a win over Maryland, the second touchdown return of his career (Indiana, 2014).
King has recorded 67 tackles, with one tackle for loss, and 12 pass break-ups to go with his eight interceptions. King also has handled KO returns (25.6) and punt returns (12.7) throughout the season.
King was named the Jim Thorpe national Defensive Player of the Week and Big Ten Conference Defensive Player of the Week following Iowa’s win at Wisconsin.
Iowa (12-1), will meet Stanford (11-2) in the 2016 Rose Bowl on New Year’s Day (4:10 p.m. CT), in Pasadena. Iowa completed a perfect regular season with a school-record 12 wins, winning the West Division before falling to Michigan State in the Big Ten Championship (16-13).