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Ferris State’s Murphy Becomes First Non-FBS Player to Win Ted Hendricks Award

Ferris State defensive end Caleb Murphy has been named the 2022 Ted Hendricks Award winner, an unprecedented achievement for a Division II player.

The Ted Hendricks Award is given annually to the best defensive end in college football, regardless of division. On Wednesday, Murphy became the first non-FBS player to win the award.

To understand the prestige associated with this honor, just look at the last four winners of it.

  • 2017: Bradley Chubb, NC State
  • 2018: Clelin Ferrell, Clemson
  • 2019: Chase Young, Ohio State
  • 2020: No award (Covid-19)
  • 2021 Aidan Hutchinson, Michigan

Every single one of those players was a top five pick in the NFL Draft.

It’s rarified air for Murphy to join and his unprecedented achievement comes after an unprecedented season in which he set the NCAA record for sacks in a season with 25.5. He also led all college football players this season with 39.5 tackles for loss.

Murphy’s play helped lead the Bulldogs to back-to-back national championships.

He is the third player from the state of Michigan to win the award, joining two Michigan Wolverines — Hutchinson (2021) and LaMarr Woodley (2006).

Murphy adds the Ted Hendricks Award to a collection of honors this fall that include the Gene Upshaw Award (D-II Lineman of the Year), First Team AFCA All-America honors and the GLIAC Player of the Year. He also finished second in the Harlon Hill Trophy voting behind Colorado Mines QB John Matocha.

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