July 18, 2012IRVING, Texas - Baylor juniors Jordan Najvar and Cyril Richardson were named to the preseason All-Big 12 Football Team, as chosen by media representatives who cover the conference and announced on Wednesday.
Baylor is one of four programs with multiple offensive players named to the All-Big 12 team. The Bears did not have any players named to the preseason team a season ago, but Baylor placed four players on the first-team in the postseason vote, including Offensive Player of the Year Robert Griffin III.
Both Najvar and Richardson earned honorable mention All-Big 12 honors as sophomores in 2011. Najvar has been named to the preseason watch list for the 2012 John Mackey Award, and Richardson has been placed on preseason watch lists for the Rotary Lombardi Award and the Outland Trophy.
Najvar, a tight end from Spring, Texas, is entering his third season at Baylor. He sat out the 2010 season after transferring from Stanford, but he made seven starts and led all Baylor tight ends with 15 catches for 146 yards and two touchdowns in 2011. Najvar had touchdown catches in Baylor's season-opening win over No. 14 TCU and in its No. 19 win over No. 5 Oklahoma.
Richardson, an offensive lineman from Fort Worth, Texas, is in his fourth year at Baylor. He started all 13 games at left tackle last season, but he moved back to guard during the spring and is expected to start at left guard in 2012. He ranked third on the team with 70 total knockdowns, averaged an 80.6 percent coaches' grade for the year and graded 81 percent or higher in 10 of 13 games in 2011.
The media Preseason Big 12 Poll will be released on Thursday, followed by the annual Big 12 Football Media Days in Dallas on Monday and Tuesday. Baylor will participate in Tuesday's portion of the media days, along with Texas, Oklahoma State, Kansas and West Virginia.
Baylor opens the season by hosting SMU for a 5:30 p.m. game on Sunday, Sept. 2. The game will be televised live nationally on FSN. Season tickets can be purchased by visiting www.BaylorBears.com/tickets, and single-game tickets go on sale Aug. 8.