Over the past decade, few Big Ten offensive linemen were tougher, better and more complete players than Dan Feeney. In compiling its all-decade football team this week, the league’s television arm agreed.
Big Ten Network on Tuesday named Feeney one of the league’s six best O-linemen from the past 10 seasons, a fitting honor for the two-time first team All-American. Feeney was a fixture at right guard from 2012 to 2016, where he started the first 41 games of his career before briefly shifting to right tackle out of necessity as a senior. In 46 games at IU, Feeney allowed only two sacks in 3,355 snaps, while earning a reputation as one of the hardest-working players in the Hoosiers’ program.
Feeney was a monster, excelling in IU’s zone blocking scheme. And every so often, the CQ team will sit down in front of the television, crack a couple cold ones and watch this particular clip on a three-hour loop:
Joining Feeney on BTN’s all-decade O-line are Ohio State linemen Wyatt Davis and Billy Price, Michigan’s Taylor Lewan, Iowa’s Brandon Scherff and Wisconsin’s Michael Deiter
We’re still incredulous over the way the network bungled its all-decade basketball team assignment (Aaron Craft pffffffftttttttt), but including Feeney in the football exercise is at least a step toward atonement.
Here’s what Feeney had to say to BTN’s Rick Pizzo:
On his reaction to the selection:
“It’s a huge honor. It obviously wasn’t just me. We had a great O-line in my time at Indiana, a great coaching staff, so it’s not just me winning this award. It’s everybody helping me become the player I could be in my time at Indiana.”
On the 2014 season and helping IU’s O-line establish itself as one of the league’s toughest units to play:
“We definitely took pride in that. We loved running our zone play. Obviously, we had Tevin Coleman, who was an all-time back for us. The kid could just explode through holes and his speed was just unmatched in the Big Ten. Going with other guys on the O-line, Collin Rahrig, Jake Reed, Jason Spriggs, those are top name guys that just helped make those holes and make us a good unit in that ‘14 season.
On whether the running back makes the line, or the line makes the running back:
“The running back sets up O-line blocks. The way (Coleman) ran it, we got used to it. We knew where he was going to be when he was attacking the defense and when he was going to stick his foot in the ground and hit the hole. Obviously, it takes reps to get used to it, and that was our second or third year blocking for Tevin. I think we just got in that groove where we were like, ‘Hey, this is what we’re doing. Try and stop it.’”
On his most memorable on-field moment during his time at IU:
“I loved the Missouri game. I believe it was in ‘14 when we went to Missouri. It was just an absolute grinder of a game. We were running the ball and we ended up coming out with a win at the last second. That game, I just love looking back at it. I love seeing highlights of it. That one definitely sticks out to me because it felt like everything was kind of stacked against us in that game. Big Ten playing an SEC school. They heated up the locker room on us. The locker room was probably 150 degrees at halftime. It wasn’t even a break. I was like, ‘I’d rather just be playing.’ But that game, I loved every second of it just because we were doing our thing. It was a back and forth game and we were just going at it.”
Also, before we go, let’s offer a warm CQ salute to Feeney for sporting this fine summer ‘stache:
Dan, my man, you have never looked better.