Receiver R.J. Shelton named MSU MVP

Matt Charboneau
The Detroit News
R.J. Shelton

Senior wide receiver R.J. Shelton was named Michigan State’s most valuable player at the team’s banquet on Sunday.

The Governor’s Award winner was named second-team All-Big Ten by the coaches this season and honorable mention by the media. He led the team in receptions (53), receiving yards (789) and all-purpose yards (1,377), and tied for the team lead in touchdown catches with five, all of which were career highs.

Senior captain Riley Bullough won a team-best five awards: Downtown Coaches Club Award (most outstanding senior defensive player), Biggie Munn Award (most inspirational defensive player), Iron Man Award (strength and conditioning), Doug Weaver Oil Can Award (team humorist), and the Captains Award (team captain).

Junior defensive lineman Malik McDowell, who was named second-team All-Big Ten by the coaches and media, did not win any awards. After the season, McDowell declared his intent to enter the NFL draft, giving up his final season of eligibility at MSU.

Michigan State finished 2016 with a 3-9 record, but the senior class compiled a 39-14 record from 2013-16 to become the fourth-most winningest class in school history. The class won two Big Ten championships (2013, 2015), two bowl games (2015 Cotton, 2014 Rose) and played in the 2015 College Football Playoff.


Governor’s Award (Most Valuable Player): WR R.J. Shelton

Downtown Coaches Club Award - Outstanding Senior Offense: WR R.J. Shelton

Downtown Coaches Club Award - Outstanding Senior Defense: LB Riley Bullough

Downtown Coaches Club Award - Outstanding Senior Special Teams: PK Michael Geiger

Biggie Munn Award (Most Inspirational): QB Tyler O’Connor (offense), LB Riley Bullough (defense)

MSU Football Players Association Community Service Award: TE Josiah Price

President’s Award (Senior Lineman/Senior Back Perseverance): OL Kodi Kieler (offense), DE Evan Jones (defense)

Up Front Award (Outstanding Lineman): OG Brian Allen (offense), LB Chris Frey (defense)

Clarence Underwood Sportsmanship Award: OL Benny McGowan

Outstanding Underclass Lineman: OT Cole Chewins (offense), DT Mike Panasiuk (defense)

Outstanding Underclass Back: RB LJ Scott (offense), S Montae Nicholson (defense)

Jim Adams Award (Unsung Heroes): RB Prescott Line (offense), DT Kevin Williams (defense)

Tommy Love Award (Most Improved): RB Gerald Holmes (offense), DT Raequan Williams (defense)

Danziger Award (Outstanding Detroit Area Player): WR Donnie Corley

Iron Man Award (Strength and Conditioning): LB Riley Bullough

Potsy Ross Award (Scholar-Athlete): QB Tyler O’Connor, WR Edward Barksdale III

Doug Weaver Oil Can (Team Humorist): LB Riley Bullough

Captains Award: LB Riley Bullough, S Demetrious Cox, QB Tyler O’Connor