IOWA CITY, Iowa - University of Iowa senior defensive back Micah Hyde has been named the recipient of the Big Ten's Tatum-Woodson Defensive Back of the Year Award. The announcement was made by the Big Ten Conference Monday and announced on the BTN's annual show revealing the 2012 all-conference teams.
Along with being named Defensive Back of the Year, Hyde was named first-team All-Big Ten by both league coaches and media. Senior center James Ferentz was named second-team All-Big Ten by vote of the conference coaches.
Hawkeye players who earned honorable mention recognition from both Big Ten coaches and media include junior tight end C.J. Fiedorowicz, junior linebacker Anthony Hitchens and junior kicker Mike Meyer. Senior offensive lineman Matt Tobin was honorable mention by league coaches, while Ferentz, senior defensive end Joe Gaglione and junior linebacker James Morris earned honorable mention recognition from the media.
"Micah has done a tremendous job for our team both on and off the field the past four years," said UI head coach Kirk Ferentz. "Not only has Micah been a great starter at cornerback for us the last three years, he has also been a valuable contributor on special teams as a gunner and punt returner. Micah has sparked our team with many big plays, maybe none bigger than his interception and touchdown return versus Missouri in the 2010 Insight Bowl. He has been a strong and positive team leader for some time."
The Tatum-Woodson Defensive Back Award is named after former Ohio State player Jack Tatum and former Boilermaker Rod Woodson. Hyde completed the season with 78 tackles, including 44 solo tackles. He led the team with 14 pass break-ups, forced two fumbles, and had one interception. He recovered three fumbles, one of which he returned for a touchdown against Purdue.
Hyde (6-foot-1, 190 pounds) is a native of Fostoria, Ohio. He started all 38 games over his final three seasons and played in all 51 games throughout his career. He recorded 240 career tackles to tie for 34th on Iowa's career tackle list. He is tied for 18th in career interceptions (8-142 yards) and had four forced and three recovered fumbles in his career. He had interception returns of 72 and 66 yards for touchdowns as a sophomore, which are the 10th and 12th-longest returns in school history. Hyde averaged 7.5 yards on 27 punt returns the last two seasons. He earned second-team All-Big Ten honors in 2011, and was honorable mention in 2010.
Ferentz (6-2, 284), an Iowa City native, started all 38 Iowa games over the last three seasons. He earned honorable mention honors from both coaches and media as a junior. Tobin (6-6, 290) was recognized for the first time in his career. The native of Worthington, Iowa, started all 12 games this season and has 21 career starts. He started the first seven games of the season at left guard before starting the final four games at left tackle.
Meyer had an outstanding season while leading the team in scoring with 76 points. Meyer (6-2, 185) is a Dubuque, Iowa, native who made 17-of-21 field goal attempts. He was perfect on his 25 PAT kicks, extending his school-record streak to 81 in a row. He was one of 20 semifinal candidates for the Lou Groza Award.
Fiedorowicz (6-7, 265) is a native of Johnsburg, Ill. He had his most productive season by recording 45 receptions for 433 yards and a touchdown. Hitchens (124) and Morris (113) ranked first and second on the team in tackles. Hitchens (6-1, 224), a native of Lorain, Ohio, completed his first season as a starter.
Morris (6-2, 230) has started 29 games in his three seasons, and earned honorable mention from both coaches and media in 2011. He has collected 293 career tackles to rank 16th in career stops. Among his tackles in 2012 were nine for loss, which shared the team lead.
Gaglione (6-4, 264) hails from Novelty, Ohio, and earned his first postseason recognition. Gaglione started 10 games before missing the final contest against Nebraska due to injury. Gaglione collected 51 tackles. He led the team with five quarterback sacks and was the co-leader with Morris in tackles for loss (nine) while causing two fumbles.
Senior quarterback James Vandenberg is Iowa's recipient of the Big Ten Sportsmanship Award. Vandenberg (6-3, 212) took every offensive snap for the Hawkeyes in 2012. He passed for 2,249 yards and seven touchdowns in his second year as a starter. In career statistics, Vandenberg ranks fifth in pass attempts (888), sixth in pass completions (507) and seventh in passing yards (5,786), touchdown passes (35) and total offense (5,853).