Hard to believe, but we are officially under 100 days until the Broncos storm the Capital to take on the Hokies. As you may remember, last summer we embarked on the Herculean task of counting down a different roster spot for each remaining day until kickoff. Well, I burned out after about 30 days and the countdown was spotty at best until the Ducks rolled into town. I've recommitted myself this offseason however, and I'm shooting for 100 percent this time around.
We've got 90 days until kickoff...so today we'll be taking a look at number 90 on the Bronco roster—Billy Winn
#90, Billy Winn, Junior, DT
Weight: 288 lbs.
High School: Las Vegas High School, Las Vegas, NV
How'd he get to The Blue™?
As a three-sport star at Las Vegas High, Billy Winn had plenty of opportunity to get his name out. Winn not only lettered in football, wrestling and track, but excelled at all three as well. As a senior, WInn was named the Sunrise League Defensive Player of the Year as well as being named first team All-State and All-League after registering 18 sacks and 3 forced fumbles from the defensive end position. As an encore, Winn posted PRs of 171' 11" in discus, 53' 1" in shot put, and ran the 100 in 11.86. Winn also went 32-4 as a wrestler and set a record for the power clean at the Vegas Open weightlifting championships. Remember when I said that Shea McClellin might be the best athlete on the team a few days back? Well, Shea...meet your competition. It's also no big stretch to say that Billy Winn was the most sought after player in the state of Nevada when he accepted the Broncos' scholarship offer in the 2007 recruiting class. By the time LOI day 2007 arrived, Billy Winn had offers from Oregon, Oregon State, Washington State, Arizona State, UNLV, and Texas Tech. You're reading this right now because he chose wisely.
Double Down [duhb-uhl doun]
What happened in Vegas got him a scholarship to Boise State.
Named to Phile Steele's All-Freshman second-team in 2008. Named Sporting News Freshman All-American. One forced fumble, two quarterback hurries and two pass breakups as a redshirt freshman. Named second team All-WAC in 2009 as a sophomore. Recorded safety against Oregon in '09 season opener.
Briefly injured during critical stretch in 2009 Poinsettia Bowl.
Winn is easily the best tackle we've had since Andrew Browning. I felt that way during and after his freshman year, and I feel it even more strongly now. In fact, I will go out on a limb and say that by the time the 2011 season has come and gone, and Billy Winn is drafted, he may be remembered as one of the greatest defensive tackles the Broncos have ever had. Has he put up mind-numbing stats? Not entirely (although his 70 tackles and 8.5 sacks in his first two years in the program are good by any standard), but he continues to show the sure tackling ability, athleticism, and nose for the ball that only the greats display. I can still recall vividly sitting in Autzen stadium in 2008 when Billy Winn ran nearly uncontested into the Oregon backfield and brought down running back Jeremiah Johnson from behind. It was a display of moves and speed that I was not accustomed to in a Bronco DT—let alone a freshman one. Since that game in 2008, Winn has terrorized opposing offenses from Eugene, Oregon to Hattiesburg, Mississippi and earned the respect of many a guard and center. Winn showed his versatility by playing defensive end in the 2008 Poinsettia Bowl when injuries laid the cupboard bare at the position...and really, that's just how Winn plays DT, like a 290 lb. end. He gets after the quarterback, gets in the passing and running lanes and is relentless off the block. Winn should have a monster year in 2010, and is fully capable of doubling last year's sack number (6). I'll be a bit more conservative and predict that Winn finishes the year with 9 sacks and 55 tackles. He's the heart of a D-line that may be the best ever.
Completely made up fact
Billy Winn's favorite musicians are Billy Ocean, Billy Idol, and Billy Squier. Billy Squier mainly because of this video. Excercise caution: once you've seen the following video you can't "unsee" it.