(photo courtesy Sporting News)

The offensive stars are up for the Big Ten MVP Award….

Naturally, I speak of JT Barrett and Curtis Samuels. They have been selected as part of the four finalists for the Chicago Tribune Silver Football, which is voted on by the conference head coaches and awarded annually by the newspaper to the Big Ten Conference’s most valuable player. Besides the two outstanding Buckeyes, Penn State’s running back Saquon Barkley and Michigan linebacker Jabrill Peppers round out this year’s finalists.

Two winners of the award will be announced next week, according to Tribune sportswriter Teddy Greenstein.

JT already earlier in the week was named the Big Ten’s quarterback of the year. He has directed the # 2 Buckeyes to an 11-1 record. Part of their victory chops have included wins over College Football Playoff Poll Top 10 teams. JT has a “very” impressive 3,275 yards of total offense (2,428 pass, 847 rush) and 33 touchdowns this year for the Buckeyes has JT’s hand (or feet) in it.

Samuel, first-team all-Big Ten by both the coaches and the media, who is, and this certainly is worth the mention – the only player in the nation with at least 700 rushing and 700 receiving yards. This goes without saying now (after that announcement) – he leads the team in all-purpose yards (1,546). He is second in the Big Ten in receptions with 65 – while leading the Buckeyes with 14 TD’s (seven receiving, seven rushing).

The Ohio State Buckeyes have won the Silver Football in three of the past four years – QB Braxton Miller in 2012 and 2013 and RB Ezekiel Elliott last year – and have claimed a total of 18 Silver Football awards throughout its birth in 1924. This leads all schools. TTUN is close behind with 17 while Iowa has 10, Wisconsin 9, and so on and on ….

The announcement, as I previously mentioned will be next week …. Stay tuned. We will keep you in the know.