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The Top 12 Pac-12 defensive linemen of the BCS era: Terrell Suggs highlights list of standout defensive linemen

The LA schools dominate the list with half of the choices coming from UCLA and USC.


Dave Ball UCLA 2000-03

Part of the devastating duo of the Ball Twins (his twin brother Mat was the Bruins' other starter at defensive end) that terrorized quarterbacks all across the Pac-12 in the early 2000. Ball was the Pac-10 Defensive Player of the Year in 2003, a unanimous All-American, Morris Trophy winner and two-time first team all-conference honoree who set the career record for sacks at UCLA.

Andre Carter Cal 1997-2000

Another Morris Trophy winners, unanimous All-American and two-time all-conference honoree, Carter was a fast nightmare coming off the edge and was one of the best defensive players at any position in the country as a senior before becoming a Top 10 draft pick.

Shaun Cody USC 2001-04

A key part of the fearsome defensive line that turned USC into a national power under Pete Carroll, Cody was an All-American in his final year at USC where he helped them win a national championship. Cody was two-time first all-conference Pac-10 Defensive Player of the Year as a senior.

Sedrick Ellis USC 2004-07

Another stacked résumé that reads like other guys' on this list - unanimous All-American, two-time first team all-conference, Pac-10 Defensive Player of the Year and Morris Trophy winner. Ellis was a beast in run support with his incredible strength, but also had the athleticism to get after the quarterback and became a Top 10 draft pick.

Rien Long Washington State 2000-02

The last Pac-12 player to win the Outland Trophy, Long was as dynamic of a pass rusher at defensive tackle that has ever played in the conference. He was also a first team all-conference honoree and All-American as a serious sack machine.

Haloti Ngata Oregon 2003-05

Arguably the most-talented defensive tackle at his size to ever play in the conference, Ngata was simply an immovable object during his brief career at Oregon. Ngata was a Morris Trophy winner, All-American and all-conference as a junior before heading to the NFL as a Top 15 pick.

Stephen Paea Oregon State 2008-10

One of the strongest players to ever play in the conference, Paea was a stalwart in the middle on defense and has the fantastic distinction of being a two-time Morris Trophy winner. He was strong enough to hold up against the run, but could also get after the quarterback and rack up sacks and ended up being two-time first team All-Pac-10 and Pac-10 Defensive Player of the Year in 2010.

Mike Patterson USC 2001-04

Baby Sapp was one of the reasons the Trojans won back-to-back national championships and was an All-American as USC's rock in the middle of their defense. Patterson was a stalwart up front before becoming a first round NFL Draft pick.

Brian Price UCLA 2006-09

2009 Pac-10 Defensive Player of the Year and All-American, Price was a dominant defensive tackle that could really stop plays in the backfield and get after the quarterback. Price finished with a ton of sacks and tackles-for-loss and ended up being a second round draft pick.

Terrell Suggs Arizona State 2000-02

My vote for the greatest defensive end to ever play in the conference, Suggs was almost unblockable coming off the edge in passing situations at the end of his career, setting the single-season record for sacks as a junior with 24. Suggs was an unanimous All-American, Morris Trophy winner and in my opinion is one of the best players to ever play in the conference at any position.

Will Sutton Arizona State 2010-13

Sutton just wrapped up a career by winning back-to-back Pac-12 Player of the Year awards and was one of the best defensive players in the entire country as a junior and senior. Sutton was a fantastic hybrid type defensive lineman that could excel all along the line and regularly made plays in the backfield.

Kenechi Udeze USC 2001-03

An All-American sack machine that was part of one of the best defensive lines to ever be put together in college football, Udeze was frightening off the edge with his size and speed. Udeze set the career sack record at USC in just three years before going to the NFL as a first round draft pick.

Honorable Mention

Bruce Davis UCLA 2004-07

Justin Hickman UCLA 2003-06

Star Lotulelei Utah 2010-12

Nick Reed Oregon 2005-08

Larry Tripplett Washington 1998-2001