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December 08, 2015

Temple's Matakevich wins award for best defensive player of year

Senior linebacker given honor over players from Alabama, Clemson

The same day Temple University awarded its head football coach Matt Rhule a six-year contract, senior linebacker Tyler Matakevich was recognized for his stellar season.

Matakevich, who had the most interceptions of any linebacker in college football this season, was named the 2015 Bronko Nagurski Trophy winner by the Football Writer Association of America. The award is given to the best defensive player in the country.

Beating out players from Penn State, Alabama, Clemson and Duke, Matakevich called the honor "unbelievable," according to OwlSports.

He was the only player to lead his team in tackles every game this season and is the current active leader among CFB players with 481 career tackles.

For the 2015 campaign, in which the Owls finished 10-3 and will face Toledo in the Boca Rotan Bowl on Dec. 22, Matakevich had 126 total tackles, 15 tackles for 62 yards in losses, 4.5 sacks and five picks.

Following the award, Temple Athletics put together a video showing a small sample of the senior's highlights this past year, which you can watch below: