Nine Hoosiers Earn All-Big Ten Honors on Defense and Special Teams


IU Athletics Release

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – Indiana senior linebacker Tegray Scales and fifth-year senior kicker Griffin Oakes earned first team All-Big Ten honors, the conference announced today. Fifth-year senior cornerback Rashard Fant collected second team accolades.
Scales is the first Hoosiers linebacker to be honored as a first-teamer since Willie Bates and Joe Huff in 1988. Oakes, who was a first team selection in 2015, is just the second IU kicker (Scott Bonnell, 1991-92) to be named first team All-B1G twice.
The conference released defensive and special teams award winners, and six Indiana standouts carded honorable mention recognition: senior linebacker Chris Covington (coaches and media), junior safety Jonathan Crawford (coaches and media), fifth-year senior Chase Dutra (media), redshirt junior return specialist J-Shun Harris II (coaches and media), senior defensive end Robert McCray III (media) and redshirt sophomore punter Haydon Whitehead (coaches and media). Scales netted first team honors from the media and second team honors from the coaches, while Fant tallied second team honors from the media and third team honors from the coaches.
Fifth-year senior offensive lineman Danny Friend was named the team's Big Ten Sportsmanship Award winner.
The Hoosiers matched last season's school record with six defenders earning recognition from the conference. Scales was a second team honoree last year, while Fant repeated as a second-teamer.
Scales earned second team All-America honors from in 2016 and became the first IU linebacker to land on an All-America team since Van Waiters (3rd team) in 1987. He continued his elite play in 2017, as he paced the team with 12.5 tackles for loss (T-7th in the Big Ten) and two interceptions. His six sacks (T-8th) were tied for the team lead, while his 89 tackles (T-10th) and 56 solo stops (6th) ranked second.
The Cincinnati native finished third on IU's charts with 46.0 career stops for loss, sixth with 18.0 career sacks and 10th with 325 tackles. Scales wrapped up his career with 13 double-digit tackle games, four multi-sack games and 14 multi-TFL games.
Since the start of the 2016 season, Scales recorded 12, 10-plus tackle games, which shared 11th nationally. He finished second among all defenders nationally with 148 solos, tied for second with 36.0 stops for loss and 17th with 211 total tackles.
The 2015 Big Ten Bakken-Andersen Kicker of the Year, Oakes was one of 20 semifinalists for the 2017 Lou Groza Collegiate Place-Kicker Award. He was 16-of-17 on the year, including 11 straight makes to close out the campaign (2nd in program history), and 38-of-39 on extra points, with both misses coming on blocks.
Oakes led the league and was second nationally in field goal percentage (94.1). He was a perfect 15-for-15 from inside the 50-yard line, including 4-of-4 from 40-49 yards, and was one of eight kickers with at least one 50-yarder and an 85.0 percent-or-better accuracy.
The Greenwood, Ind., native finished 69-of-90 on field goals (76.7) and 145-of-152 on extra points (95.4) in his career. His 69 field goals make him the most prolific kicker in Indiana history, and he is second with 147 extra points and 354 total points. 
Additionally, the 69 makes are fifth and the 354 points are eighth in Big Ten history. On IU's single-season lists, he is fourth with his 16 field goals and sixth with his 38 PATs.
Fant is the NCAA's active and IU's career leader with 58 passes defended and 53 pass breakups in 49 games (36 starts). In 2017, he led the team with nine PBUs (T-9th in the Big Ten) to go along with 24 tackles, 2.5 for loss, one interception and one fumble recovery.
The Atlanta native ended his career with seven games of three-or-more pass breakups and 11 multi-PBU games. In 2016, Fant topped the Big Ten in pass breakups (17, T-2nd nationally) and passes defended (20, 3rd nationally). He also led the Big Ten and finished second nationally with 22 pass breakups in 2015.
Fant graduated in December 2016 with a degree in SPEA management and is currently pursuing his master's degree in public affairs. He was a candidate for the Senior CLASS award and a nominee for the Wuerffel Trophy.