Is Shawn Oakman the unanimous Defensive Player of the Year? Leaning completely towards him is not crazy. If you're a college football fan, then you know why. Unless another defensive standout shows up in 2018, like the Cape Fear Heroes linebacker Ralph Scott, sticking to Oakman may be the only option.
Oakman was absolutely eye opening in his college stint. He played in 36 games at Baylor, compiling 128 tackles, 46.5 tackles for loss, 17.5 sacks, three passes defended, three fumble recoveries and eight forced fumbles. It's hard to miss the guy too, having a terrifying frame of 6'8, 287 pounds with 35 3/4" inch arm length and 10 5/8" inch hands.
He runs a 4.9 40 yard dash and has a 32 inch vertical jump. That's just a little bit on the former monster of Baylor. Oakman has had his fair share of trouble. He was dismissed from Penn State for stealing a sandwich, but that is nothing to worry about.
He was arrested for sexual assault charges but fans shouldn't have to worry about that. Oakman returning to football means he's maturing, and that's something for Torch fans to look forward too.
What are reasonable expectations for Oakman in 2018? The Triangle Torch have other talents on defense, none as good as Oakman, but other above average talent. They have defensive end/linebacker Michael Smith who played in the NFL, Tyson Fernandez from Appalachian State, and arena veteran Akeem Ward. That'll provide Oakman the opportunity to get back there and make some sacks.
I would expect, and I'm being very realistic, 19 sacks, 44 solo tackles, 22 tackles for loss, 11 pass deflections, five forced fumbles, one interception, and three blocked kicks. Oakman is so far the preseason front runner to be the Defensive Player of the Year.