At this point in the offseason it seems pretty clear that the national media, the coaches, and the college football world in general thinks very highly of Purdue true freshman Dillon Thieneman. That’s been evidenced by him winning Big Ten freshman of the year as well as numerous player of the week honors. Well, this week he received even more honors. First, he was named a third team All-American by the Associated Press.
Thieneman (whose name I can spell without looking it up now, which says a lot), is obviously the only Boilermaker on the list. To receive a third team honor as a true freshman is just an incredible feat. For basketball it’s one thing, but football is truly a whole other animal. He’s just out of high school playing against guys who are mere months away from playing, and excelling, in the NFL. I think sometimes that gets overlooked.
Then today, he received another honor.
BREAKING: Purdue safety Dillon Thieneman (@DillonThieneman) is the 247Sports True Freshman of the Year for 2023— 247Sports (@247Sports) December 12, 2023
The Boilermakers found a gem, @chris_hummer writes ✍️https://t.co/FuQFvXGoAT pic.twitter.com/8Mu1K5ToTB
That’s right, the true freshman of the year from 247. I really appreciate that they award a true freshman honor like this because one additional year in a program can make a huge difference in a player’s development. Thieneman is actually the second Purdue player to win this award as Rondale Moore won this in 2018. Pretty good company to be in I’d argue.
Thieneman’s freshman year is already in the Purdue record books for number of interceptions for a freshman as well as total solo tackles in a year. There’s reason to put this season up against any of a number of Purdue defensive greats, and I don’t just mean freshman.