Oklahoma outside linebacker Nik Bonitto was named a second-team All-America selection by Sporting News after a fabulous regular season that saw him lead the Sooners in tackles for loss with 15.
Sporting News All-America Second Team@nikkkkbonitto
➡️ https://t.co/DsAfVhDhvQ #OUDNA pic.twitter.com/CS7x8I66lU
— Oklahoma Football (@OU_Football) December 14, 2021
It’s been a parade of accolades for Bonitto over the past week.
Bonitto picked up second-team All-America status from USA TODAY Sports and earned third-team All-America recognition from the Associated Press.
During Oklahoma’s regular season, Bonitto recorded 39 tackles and also finished second on the team with seven sacks.
The Fort Lauderdale, Fla., product registered a team-high nine quarterback hurries, recovered three fumbles and forced another fumble over the course of this season.
In 10 games in 2020, Bonitto finished tied for second on Oklahoma with 10.5 tackles for loss, second on the team with eight sacks and first with 10 quarterback hurries.
Bonitto announced on Dec. 6 that he was opting out of Oklahoma’s bowl game against Oregon and declaring for the 2022 NFL Draft.
Sooner 4L❤️ pic.twitter.com/ZLGf3ykvCo
— . (@nikkkkbonitto) December 6, 2021
“The last 4 years in Norman have been some of the best times of my life. I have made some unforgettable memories and made some long time friends. I would [like] to thank God, my family, my coaches, teammates, and most importantly you Sooner Nation.
“Although this place has always been my home, I’m excited for this next chapter of my life. With that being said I have decided to opt out of the bowl game and declare for the 2022 NFL Draft. Although my time is done I will always have that OU DNA,” Bonitto wrote in his NFL Draft declaration.
Bonitto ends his Oklahoma career with 117 total tackles, 32 tackles for loss, 18.5 sacks, 24 quarterback hurries and eight pass breakups. He started in 29 of the 39 games he played in over the past three seasons.
Bonitto ranks third in OU history in career sacks by a linebacker, trailing only Eric Striker (23 sacks from 2012-15) and Ogbonnia Okoronkwo (21.0 sacks from 2014-17).
Bonitto’s 18.5 career sacks ranks 13th overall in career sacks at any position.
Three other Sooners defensive starters have opted out of the Valero Alamo Bowl, too. Linebacker Brian Asamoah, defensive lineman Isaiah Thomas and defensive lineman Perrion Winfrey.
Against the Ducks, OU will be looking to replace its leading tackler in Asamoah and its top three tackles for loss and sacks producers in Bonitto, Thomas and Winfrey.
The Valero Alamo Bowl against Oregon kicks off at 8:15 on ESPN on Dec. 29.
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