Ohio State football quarterback C.J. Stroud named Big Ten Offensive Player of the Year
Ohio State quarterback C.J. Stroud is picking up hardware like his predecessors.
As the Big Ten announced the rest of its postseason awards on Wednesday afternoon, Stroud was named the offensive player of the year. He was also recognized as the league’s quarterback of the year and freshman of the year, becoming the first-ever to receive all three honors.
"Without my teammates and team and coaches, I wouldn’t be able to do it, so I’m really blessed for all of them," Stroud said during an appearance on the Big Ten Network following the reveal.
In his debut behind center this fall, Stroud put together one of the best statistical seasons in the conference.
The redshirt freshman completed 70.9% of his passes for 3,862 yards and 38 touchdowns with only five interceptions. No other Big Ten passer threw for more yards or touchdowns during the regular season.
His 182.24 passer efficiency rating was atop the Big Ten.
Former Buckeyes quarterback Justin Fields was previously selected as the top offensive player in 2020 and 2019, following Dwayne Haskins in 2018.
Stroud overcame some early-season growing pains to meet the level set by Fields and Haskins.
Over the first few weeks, he dealt with a separated AC joint in his throwing shoulder that limited his accuracy and sidelined him for a Sept. 25 game against Akron. He said he was also sick before last Saturday's loss at Michigan, though he threw for nearly 400 yards.
"It’s been ups and downs, clawing and scratching just to get a win," Stroud added during his live TV appearance. "This year wasn't the prettiest year, but I think we took a great step as a team, especially being young. I think we’ll be even better next year."
Stroud was also one of four Ohio State players on offense to earn first-team All-Big Ten honors from the coaches, media or both.
The others included left guard Thayer Munford (media and coaches), wide receiver Chris Olave (coaches) and left tackle Nicholas Petit-Frere (media and coaches).
Munford and Petit-Frere were key pieces on an offensive line that allowed the third-fewest sacks in the conference this season with 17, while Olave has been a consistent big-play threat in the Buckeyes’ passing game, catching a league-high 13 touchdowns.
They join defensive tackle Haskell Garrett, who was named to a first-team on Tuesday.
Running back TreVeyon Henderson and wide receiver Garrett Wilson were consensus second-team selections, while right guard Paris Johnson was put on the second-team by the coaches and right Dawand Jones landed on the media’s second-team.
Slot receiver Jaxon Smith-Njigba was on both of the all-conference third-teams.
Three more Buckeyes were honorable mention selections, including Jeremy Ruckert (coaches and media), offensive lineman Matt Jones (media) and center Luke Wypler (media).
Joey Kaufman covers Ohio State football for The Columbus Dispatch. Contact him at email@example.com or on Twitter @joeyrkaufman.