Jan. 18, 2011
Running back Johnathan Franklin, linebacker Akeem Ayers and safety Tony Dye were selected winners of UCLA's Henry R. "Red" Sanders Award for Most Valuable Player at the Annual UCLA Football Awards Banquet, held Tuesday evening at the Hyatt Century Plaza Hotel.
Franklin became the first Bruin since Chris Markey in 2006 to rush for over 1,000 yards. He finished with 1,127 yards, the highest total by a Bruin since 1997. He ranked fifth in the Pac-10 in rushing and earned second-team All-Pac-10 honors from the league's coaches.
Ayers, one of the most versatile defensive performers in the country, earned second-team All-America honors from the Walter Camp Football Foundation. On the year, Ayers ranked fourth on the team with 68 tackles, first (tied) with 4.0 sacks, second with 10.0 tackles for loss and second with two interceptions.
Dye led the team with 96 tackles in his 12 games and his average of 8.00 tackles per contest ranked fourth (tied) in the Pac-10. He also led the Bruins and ranked seventh (tied) in the league with 10 passes defended (nine passes broken up and one interception). He earned All-Pac-10 honorable mention from the league's coaches.
The complete list of winners:
Jack. R. Robinson Award for Highest Scholarship of a Senior Player: holder/punter Danny Rees
George W. Dickerson Award for Outstanding Offensive Player vs. USC: running back Johnathan Franklin
Donn Moomaw Award for Outstanding Defensive Player vs. USC: safety Tony Dye
Paul I. Wellman Memorial Award for All-Around Excellence: wide receiver Taylor Embree
Jerry Long "Heart" Award: offensive guard Darius Savage