Jerel Worthy may have entered Michigan State as an undervalued prospect. However, after another solid season the Huber Heights (Ohio) Wayne product became the first Spartan defensive lineman since Bubba Smith to earn AP First-Team All-America honors.
The 6-foot-3, 310-pound Worthy was key to the Spartans success this season recording tackles for loss in eight of the Spartans 13 games.
Worthy also earned First-Team All-America honors from the American Football Coaches Association, Walker Camp Football Foundation, CBSSports.com, Yahoo! Sports and NBCSports.com to go with being named a semifinalist for the Lombardi Award (college lineman of the year) and Chuck Bednarik Award (defensive player of the year). Worthy was also a quarterfinalist for the Lott IMPACT Trophy.
A first-team All-Big Ten selection by both the coaches and media, Worthy ranks fourth on the Spartans in tackles for loss. He also recorded 25 tackles, 14 quarterback hits and 10 hurries.
Spartans head coach Mark Dantonio had the following to say about his star defensive tackle.
“Jerel Worthy has been a three-year starter and throughout his career, he has shown the ability to make big plays,” said Dantonio. “Over the last two years, he has put together some dominating performances. Jerel helps anchor a defensive front seven that has ranked first in the Big Ten against the run all season long.”
Worthy has started 37 of his 39 career games for the Green & White and ranks among the Spartans all-time leaders having posted 25.5 tackles for losses including 12 sacks.