Dec. 3, 2001
TUCSON - Sophomore halfback Clarence Farmer (Houston, Texas) was named Most Valuable Player at the University of Arizona Football Awards banquet Sunday night, plus earned top honors as the most valuable offensive player.
Farmer's 1,129 yards rushing in 2001 is the fifth-highest single-season total in UA history. He passed five players on the chart in his final game, with 32 carries for 158 yards, an effort which helped him earn first-team All-Pacific-10 Conference honors.
Junior inside linebacker Lance Briggs (Sacramento, Calif.), the Cats' other first-team all-league selection, was named the team's most valuable defensive player. Briggs led the team with 98 tackles and 14 tackles for loss. He was a repeat first-team All-Pac-10 selection.
Sophomore free safety Clay Hardt (Marana, Ariz.) earned the Most Valuable Special Teams Player award, finishing the season with 26 tackles, most of those coming on kicking-unit plays. Champion Player of the Year awards for outstanding performance on scout teams went to halfback Gainus Scott (Houston) on special teams, quarterback-receiver Jesse Gran (Buckley , Wash.) on offense and linebacker Pedro Limon (Douglas, Ariz.) on defense. All three redshirted their freshman seasons in 2001.
Senior wide receiver Malosi Leonard (Palmdale, Calif.) won the Jim Ewing Memorial Award for outstanding character, spirit and senior-class scholastic performance, while junior quarterback Jason Johnson (Puyallup, Wash.) earned the Undergraduate Academics Award for the best grade point average and classroom excellence.
Senior defensive end Eli Wnek (Glendale, Ariz.) was given the Golden "A" Award for exemplary leadership, citizenship and overall efforts toward team performance.
Junior offensive tackle Darren Safranek (Tucson) and senior defensive end Alex Luna (San Fernando, Calif.) were named winners of the offensive and defensive Martin Gentry Awards for outstanding performances by Wildcat linemen.
Honored for the election as 2001 team captains were senior offensive lineman Steven Grace (Honolulu), senior defensive tackle Anthony Thomas (Pasadena, Calif.) and senior strong safety Brandon Nash (Beverly Hills, Calif.).
Four seniors were cited for Coach Recognition Awards -- strong safety and nickel back Zaharius Johnson (Bradenton, Fla.), offensive guard Kevin Barry (Racine, Wis.), wide receiver Brandon Marshall (Oceanside, Calif.) and defensive end Johnny Jackson (San Diego).
Additionally, junior wide receiver Bobby Wade (Phoenix), was given a keepsake to honor his selection as Most Valuable Player of the Arizona-Arizona State game, an award he received as voted by the media.