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Darius Nall
Central Florida
Nominated by George O'Leary
Junior  

Darius Nall was a Conference USA All-Freshman team pick in 2007. He was suffering from chest pains while working out the following summer and a series of tests revealed a cancerous mass attached to his lung. Nall missed the entire 2008 season undergoing chemo. He played in 2009 but wasn’t quite himself yet. Still lacking a piece of his lung which was removed in surgery, Nall regained his old form in 2010. He leads UCF and is tied for fourth in C-USA with his 7.5 sacks despite the fact that the Knights rotate the defensive line heavily and he typically sees action for less than half of the team’s plays. UCF’s defense has consistently ranked in the national Top 20 all season long and the Knights are enjoying one of their best seasons ever – ranked in the Top 25 for the first time, 9-3 on the year and in the C-USA Championship Game. Nall was named the Conference USA Defensive Player of the Week twice this fall.