Roosevelt Nix named MAC Defensive Player of the Year

Lance Lysowski

The Mid-American Conference did not know who Roosevelt Nix was when the season began.

That changed quickly.

The 6-foot, 240-pound freshman defensive tackle was named the 2010 MAC Defensive Player of the Year on Wednesday. Nix is the first freshman to obtain the honor in its 45-year history, after leading the conference with 20 tackles for a loss and 10 sacks.

The once overlooked prospect from Reynoldsburg, Ohio, finished the season tied for ninth in the nation with four forced fumbles, and added 43 tackles, eight quarterback hurries and two blocked kicks.

Pete Rekstis, Kent State defensive coordinator, said in a press release that Nix was a vital part of the nation’s 7th best rush defense.

“Roosevelt was a game-changer who was constantly able to make big plays in crucial situations,” Rekstis said. “He has a tremendous ability to get off the ball quickly, a great motor and has a knack for getting to the ball even when he’s doubled teamed. He was born to play defensive line. For him to win the award as a freshman speaks volumes to how respected he is by the other teams in the conference.”

Nix joins Jack Lambert, former Kent State linebacker and Pittsburgh Steelers great, as the only players in the Flashes’ history to win the award. Senior linebacker Cobrani Mixon and junior punter Matt Rinehart on the All-MAC First Team joined Lambert.

Tyshon Goode, sophomore wide receiver, and senior safety Brian Lainhart earned second team honors, and senior linebacker Dorian Wood, Sam Kirkland, junior wide receiver, junior center Chris Anzevino and Brian Winters, sophomore offensive tackle, were named to the third team All-MAC.

Contact Lance Lysowski at [email protected].