Brown, Starr and Thigpen to Represent IU at Kickoff Luncheon

    Go Hoosiers! Marcus Thigpen is heading to Chicago for the Big Ten Kickoff Luncheon for the second straight year.
    Go Hoosiers!
    Marcus Thigpen is heading to Chicago for the Big Ten Kickoff Luncheon for the second straight year.
    Go Hoosiers!

    July 9, 2008

    BLOOMINGTON, Ind. - Indiana senior defensive tackle Greg Brown, senior kicker Austin Starr and senior running back Marcus Thigpen will represent the Hoosiers at the 37th annual Big Ten Conference Kickoff Luncheon on Friday, July 25, at the Hyatt Regency in Chicago.

    The annual event, which also features head coach Bill Lynch and the conference's other head coaches, begins at 10 a.m. CT with the players and coaches autograph and photo session for fans attending the luncheon. The luncheon is scheduled to begin at 11:30 a.m. CT with Brent Musburger of ABC and ESPN serving as the master of ceremonies.

    Brown was one of the leaders of a defensive line that had one of the finest seasons in school history in 2007. The Hoosier defense set a new school record with 42 sacks on the season and brought down opponents in the backfield 92 times as a whole.

    The Centerville, Ohio, native started every game for the Hoosiers at defensive tackle, fighting through injuries to record 50 tackles (29 solo) and 3.5 tackles for loss. He had a pivotal game in IU's 27-24 win over Purdue, matching a career best with eight tackles and two for loss. He also forced a fumble and deflected two passes on the season.

    Starr had arguably the finest season by a place-kicker in IU history in 2007, as he was named a finalist for the Lou Groza Award, was named an All-American by the Associated Press, and and was a first team All-Big Ten selection. The Logansport, Ind., native set new school records with 21 field goals, 48 extra points and 15 consecutive made field goals.

    The kicker was also a star off the field, as he was named an Academic All-American by CoSIDA/ESPN The Magazine. He was twice named Big Ten Special Teams Player of the Week, and he led the team with 111 points, the third-most in Big Ten history by a kicker.



    Thigpen is the lone Hoosier making his second trip to the Luncheon, as he was one of three IU players to make the journey to Chicago in 2007. Thigpen, one of the top kick returners in the nation, rushed for 568 yards (4.1 per carry) in 2007, playing in 12 of IU's 13 games. His 1,162 all-purpose yards led the team, as he averaged over 100 yards per game in conference contests. He also caught 21 passes out of the backfield, with three going for touchdowns.

    His finest outing came in the biggest game of the year, as he helped the Hoosiers to a 27-24 victory over Purdue to capture the Old Oaken Bucket. Thigpen notched a career-high 140 yards in the game.

    The trio, along with the rest of the Hoosiers, opens training camp on Monday, Aug. 4. Freshmen report to camp on Saturday, Aug. 2, while the remaining players arrive on Sunday, Aug. 3.


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