Hawk-Item – – One of seven sophomores named to 2020 Leadership Group . . . redshirted in 2018 after seeing action in three games . . . one of 12 true freshmen to see action in 2018 . . . earned Dean’s List recognition, fall, 2018, spring, 2019, fall, 2019, spring, 2020, fall, 2020, and spring, 2021.
2021 Honors – – Preseason third-team All-Big Ten by Phil Steele . . . 2021 – – Listed as first team middle linebacker following spring practice.
2020 Honors – – Honorable mention All-Big Ten by league media . . . Academic All-Big Ten for second year . . . Big Ten Distinguished Scholar . . . 2020 – – Started final seven games after missing opening game due to injury . . . recorded 26 solo tackles and 21 assists, with three tackles for loss and two sacks . . . did not see action in 24-20 loss at Purdue due to injury . . . started at middle linebacker in 21-20 loss to Northwestern in first action of the season . . . career-high 13 tackles vs. Northwestern, including 10 solo stops and three assists, along with two QB pressures . . . started at middle linebacker/cash position in 49-7 win over Michigan State as offense allowed 59 rushing yards and 286 yards total offense . . . eight tackles vs. MSU, including two solo stops and six assists . . . started at middle linebacker in 35-7 win at Minnesota . . . seven tackles at Minnesota, including four solo stops and three assists . . . started at middle linebacker in 41-21 win at Penn State as defense allowed just 62 net rushing yards . . . eight tackles at PSU, including four solo stops and four assists, with a shared tackle for loss . . . started at middle linebacker in 26-20 win over Nebraska . . . four tackles vs. Nebraska, including three solo stops and one assist, with one QB sack . . . started at middle linebacker in 35-21 win at Illinois . . three tackles at Illinois, including one solo tackle and two assists, along with one QB pressure . . . started at middle linebacker in 28-7 win over #25 Wisconsin as defense allowed 56 net rushing yards and 225 yards total offense . . . four tackles vs. Badgers, including two solo stops and two assists, with 1.5 tackles for loss and one sack.
2019 Honors – – Academic All-Big Ten . . . 2019 – – Saw action in all 13 games, recording six solo tackles and five assists . . . saw action in 38-14 win over Miami, recording two solo tackles and two assists as defense allowed just 59 net rushing yards . . . saw action in 30-0 win over Rutgers, recording one assisted tackle as defense allowed just 125 yards total offense . . . saw action in 18-17 win at Iowa State, recording two assisted tackles . . . saw action in 48-3 win over Middle Tennessee, recording one solo tackle as defense allowed just 216 yards total offense . . . saw action in 10-3 loss at #18 Michigan, but had no statistics . . . saw action in 17-12 loss to #9 Penn State, but had no statistics . . . saw action in 26-20 win over Purdue, but had no statistics as defense allowed just 33 net rushing yards . . . saw action in 20-0 win at Northwestern, recording one solo tackle as defense allowed just 64 net rushing yards and 202 yards total offense . . . saw action in 24-22 loss at #16 Wisconsin, but had no statistics . . . saw action in 23-19 win over #7 Minnesota, recording one solo tackle . . . saw action in 19-10 win over Illinois, but had no statistics . . . saw action in 27-24 win at Nebraska, but had no statistics . . . saw action in 49-24 Holiday Bowl win over #22 USC, recording one solo tackle as defense allowed just 22 net rushing yards.
2018 – – Saw action in three games, but had no statistics . . . first action of career in 30-24 loss at Penn State, but had no statistics . . . saw action in 63-0 win at Illinois, but had no statistics as defense allowed just 216 yards total offense . . . saw action in 31-28 win over Nebraska, but had no statistics.
High school honors — Named South Dakota Gatorade Player of the Year as a senior… first-team elite all-state as a junior and senior… first-team all-conference as a junior and senior… Career — Four-year football letterman as linebacker, quarterback, and running back… ranks fourth all-time at Washington High School with 236 career tackles… helped prep team win three state championships, posting a three-year record of 35-1, including a 34-game winning streak… recorded 105 tackles as a senior, with 13 tackles for loss, six sacks, and four forced fumbles… team captain as a senior… also lettered in basketball, track, and baseball.
Personal — Born 7/27/99… health and human physiology major… earned academic all-state recognition with a 4.0 prep GPA… named Student of the Year as a freshman and junior… parents are JoElle and Chuck Benson… high school coach was Chad Stadem.