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O’Connell, Mata’afa named AP Midseason All-Americans

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A pair of Cougs are being honored on the national stage.

NCAA Football: Nevada at Washington State James Snook-USA TODAY Sports

The Associated Press released their midseason All-Americans list, and it was good news for a pair of Cougar lineman. Offensive guard/Continent Cody O’Connell and defensive lineman Hercules Mata’afa were both named first-team midseason All-Americans.

Of course, the All-American honor is nothing new for O’Connell. The offensive lineman was named unanimous All-American last season and was a finalist for the Outland Trophy. This season, however, the Cougar offensive line hasn’t exactly been stellar. The team has allowed more than 4.5 sacks per game this season.

On the other hand, Mata’afa has been tearing it up this season. The junior has a total of 6.5 total sacks this season (the most in the Pac-12) including 5 solo sacks.

As Theo Lawson of the Spokesman Review points out, both CBS Sports and ESPN also awarded the same honor to the pair earlier this week.

As for the rest of the Pac-12, Dante Pettis was the only Washington player honored (as an all-purpose player). Stanford running back Bryce Love and Utah kicker Matt Gay were the only other players from the conference to make the cut.

You can view the full list of All-Americans here.

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