Ricky Barber named to 2020 FWAA Freshman All-American Team

Redshirt freshman defensive tackle Ricky Barber (50) signals a stop on defense against Charlotte on Dec. 6, 2020. WKU went on to win 37-19 versus the 49ers in the 2020 regular season finale. 

Drew Toennies

WKU redshirt freshman Ricky Barber becomes the fourth Hilltopper in 11 years to receive a 2020 FWAA Freshman All-American award. Barber will join defensive end Juwuan Jones (2018), offensive guard Brandon Ray (2014), and kick returner Willie McNeal (2010) in receiving this award.

The defensive tackle has recorded 58 sacks, 26 solo, 32 assisted while on the Hill. He also had three quarterback hurries and forced one fumble his season. With 58 tackles, Barber is tied for fifth place among all FBS defensive linemen.

Barber also ranked second in Conference USA for defensive tackles with 551 total snaps played, he had 30 stops, 27 pressures, and 19 hurries, which put him well above most players in the conference. Following a 89.4 defensive performance against Florida Atlantic, Barber earned a spot on PFF’s National Team of the Week.

In WKU’s back-to-back games against FIU and Southern Miss, Barber combined for four tackles and three sacks. He ended the 2020 campaign with a career high 10 tackles in the LendingTree Bowl.

Following the end of the season, Barber was announced to be on the FWAA Freshman All-American watch list. The Louisville native was also named Second Team All-C-USA by Phil Steele Publications. The league’s coaches also voted for him to be the 2020 C-USA Honorable Mention. However, he did not qualify for the C-USA All-Freshman accolades, due to earning his position on the team in 2019.

Women’s basketball beat reporter Drew Toennies at [email protected]. Follow him on Twitter @drew_toennies.