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2019 Pacific Takes Pac-12 Football Awards: Oregon seniors take home MVP

Our rundown of the top players and coaches in the Pac-12 in 2019.

NCAA Football: Pac-12 Conference Championship-Oregon vs Utah Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Player of the Year - Oregon’s Seniors

Oregon was one of the most balanced, lacking a weakness teams I can remember in recent Pac-12 history. There’s a lot of hype that goes to Justin Herbert and Penei Sewell, but I really feel like their team excelled mostly as an entire unit, and a lot of that had to do with a senior class that went from 4-8 to where they are now and who should all be recognized.

2nd Utah’s seniors 3rd Zack Moss Sr. RB Utah

Defensive Player of the Year - Evan Weaver Sr. LB Cal

Weaver was so good in 2019 that I would have seriously considered him for overall MVP had Cal had a better season. He finished with more than 170 tackles and played a huge part in winning big wins for the Bears.

2nd Bradlee Anae Sr. DE Utah 3rd Julian Blackmon Sr. S Utah

Coach of the Year - Mario Cristobal

It was between Cristobal and Whittingham for me with whoever won the conference. Cristobal wins it going away with Oregon winning the conference going away. His confidence and enthusiasm shows in the way Oregon plays and they’re starting to earn that confidence on the field with the way they are winning now.

2nd Jonathan Smith Oregon State 3rd Kyle Whittingham Utah

Special Teams Player of the Year - Michael Turk So. P Arizona State

Not a strong year for special teams player, but the Louisiana punter was one of the nation’s best each week.

2nd Blake Mazza So. K Washington State 3rd Brandon Aiyuk Sr. RS Arizona State

Freshman on the Year - Jayden Daniels QB Arizona State

Tough call here between Daniels and Kedon Slovis, but Daniels was just so clutch for ASU when they needed him, particularly against Oregon and Michigan State in big wins. The future is exceptionally bright in Tempe with him under center.

2nd Kedon Slovis QB USC 3rd Drake Jackson DE USC

Transfer of the Year - Arlington Hambright Sr. T Colorado

The Oklahoma State transfer was a rock all season for the Buffs on the offensive line and one of the reasons they were able to run the ball in 2019.

2nd Kuony Deng Jr. LB Cal 3rd Jack Jones Jr. CB Arizona State

Coordinator of the Year - Andy Avalos DC Oregon

I had Ludwig or Morgan Scalley here if Utah won the Pac-12. Avalos continued the evolution of Oregon’s defense from historically bad to one of the best in the nation. The Ducks were exceptional on defense against poor competition and very good against good competition all season.

2nd Marcus Arroyo OC Oregon Utah 3rd Andy Ludwig OC Utah

Most-Improved Player - Tyler Huntley Sr. QB Utah

Huntley was solid as a sophomore and junior. He was lights out as a senior, raising his passing yards by more than 1,000 while also raising his completion percentage by more than 10 points, his QB rating by more than 40 points, his yards per-pass by nearly four yards, and throwing for more TDs while throwing fewer interceptions. He also had his best season rushing.

2nd Thomas Graham Jr. CB Oregon 3rd Austin Jackson Jr. T USC

Biggest Surprise - Oregon’s defense

The Ducks have steadily improved their defense since the disaster of a low point that was 2016, but I don’t think anyone expected them to be as strong as they were in 2019. The Ducks were especially strong at keeping opponents from scoring, holding seven teams to 10 points or less.

*I would put Chris Petersen resigning here, but I consider that as after the season.

2nd Kedon Slovis 3rd Utah’s offense

Biggest Disappointment - Washington

Taking a step back after losing stalwarts like Myles Gaskin, Jake Browning, Kaleb McGary and almost their entire starting defense was understandable for Washington...losing five games, with three of them coming to Cal (at home), Colorado, and Stanford, was shocking.

2nd Stanford 3rd No CFP, again