For USC star DL Leonard Williams, numbers don't tell the whole tale

BY foxsports • December 12, 2014

Like many others, USC defensive lineman Leonard Williams found his Second Team All-American standing on the Walter Camp All-America team somewhat humorous. While he tried to laugh it off, there was some displeasure in the perceived snub for the 6-foot-5, 300-plus pound defensive lineman. 

Williams is largely considered the top DL in the country and a projected top-five pick in the 2015 NFL Draft if he elects to forego his senior season with the Trojans.

However, when it comes to the Walter Camp All-America Team, he was left off of the first team defense in favor of Utah's Nate Orchard, Missouri's Shane Ray, Clemson's Vic Beasley, and Ohio State's Joey Bosa.

All of those players had at least 11 sacks during the season and all were in the top-10 in the country, led by Orchard's 17.5 sacks.

Williams has just six sacks this season.

If you're looking at production from a numbers perspective, that could skew your vision of Williams' impact, USC coach Steve Sarkisian says.

"This day and age of college football, I think, so many times people get caught looking at numbers and there was a lot of guys this year that had a bunch of sacks," Sarkisian said, "but I think playing defensive line, especially on the interior like Leonard does, is more than just about sheer numbers. For what that guy did to have as many tackles as he had for us, TFL's, and sacks, I thought he had a great season." 

In addition to his six sacks (good for second on the team), Williams is also second with 71 tackles and tied for first with three forced fumbles and also added 8.5 tackles for loss and an interception during the season. 

Earlier this month Williams was selected first team All-Pac-12 for the second time in his career.

"I thought he had a fantastic season but not everybody has to agree with me," Sarkisian said.


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