AT COLORADO: Career Notes—At Colorado, he finished fourth in total tackles (440), first in solo stops (293), first in third down stops (48), 11th in TFL’s (35), and 21st in sacks (12). He had 21 career double figure tackle games: he had two as a frosh but amazingly never had more than six in a game his sophomore season. He ended his career as the nation’s second leading active tackler, trailing Central Michigan’s Red Keith, who logged 465.
2007 (Sr.)—CU’s defensive captain as selected by his teammates, he was Colorado’s first consensus All-American since 2001 when tight end Daniel Graham earned unanimous honors; he was the first Buff linebacker to earn the distinction since Matt Russell in 1996. The Associated Press, The Sporting News and Walter Camp Football Foundation all selected him first-team (three of the five services officially recognized by the NCAA), as did rivals.com and Phil Steele’s College Football. He was a runner-up for the Dick Butkus Award, presented to the nation’s top linebacker, and as one of three finalists was present in Orlando, Fla., for the awards ceremony. He was also one of 15 semifinalists for the Chuck Bednarik Award and one of eight semifinalists for the Ronnie Lott Award. He was the coaches’ choice for the Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year, CU’s first on defense since 1992. The recipient of CU’s Zack Jordan Award as the team’s most valuable player and the Dave Jones Award as the most outstanding defensive player, he also received the Buffalo Heart Award, presented by the fans. A first-team All-Big 12 performer (Associated Press, league coaches and all major publications), he finished second in the nation in tackles (160 by CU count, 149 by NCAA press box counts), and led the NCAA in solo tackles with 120 (107 press box). The 160 tackles were the fifth most in school history for a single season, but the 120 shattered the old mark of unassisted stops by 15. Tops in the Big 12 in both categories, he was also seventh in the conference in tackles for loss (0.92 per game) and was 13th in the league in sacks (0.33 per). He started all 13 games including the Independence Bowl, and played all but 34 of the team’s 830 snaps on defense during the regular season. He was involved in 25 tackles for zero or minus yardage, as he tied for the team lead with 11 for losses and led the Buffs with 14 stops for zero. He had 19 third down stops, which broke the school record by one, and added four quarterback sacks, eight hurries, three pass deflections, a forced fumble, a touchdown save, one caused interception and two near sacks. He made the first two interceptions of his career, returning the first for 37 yards at Baylor and the second for 42 yards and a touchdown at Texas Tech. Dizon posted 10 or more tackles in the final eight games of the season (and in 13 of the last 14 dating back to the end of the 2006 season); the lone exception was when he had five in the Miami-Ohio game (when the first-team defense was out there for only 42 plays). He had 22 stops (17 solo) in the season opener against Colorado State, tied for the 17th most in school history, and the most since ILB Hannibal Navies recorded 28 (19 solo) against Missouri in 1997. The 17 solo tackles tied for the third most in a game, trailing only Navies as well as ILB Greg Biekert, who had 19 at Illinois in 1990. He followed that effort up with 17 tackles at Arizona State, including four third down stops and three for losses, and was recognized as CU’s Male Athlete of the Week for both games; the coaches named him the defensive player of the week for the Colorado State and Baylor games (he had 15 tackles and an interception in the latter). He closed the regular season with 16 tackles against Nebraska (12 solo). He added two more tackles on special teams, and had five points in all, with two knockdown blocks and a recovered blocked punt against Nebraska. Against Alabama in the bowl game, he racked up 14 tackles (9 solo) with two third down stops. In the spring, the coaches selected him as the recipient of the Eddie Crowder Award, recognizing his outstanding leadership.
2006 (Jr.)—He started 11 games and played in all 12 (came in after the first series at Missouri), as he earned second-team All-Big 12 Conference honors from the Associated Press (the league coaches tabbed him honorable mention); the San Antonio Express-News recognized him on its first team, with two other regional papers selecting him second-team. He earned first-team All-Colorado honors from the state chapter of the National Football Foundation, which also selected him as the state’s player of the week for the Nebraska game, when he had a career-high 19 tackles, with nine solo and two for losses. On the year, he racked up 137 tackles (80 solo), the most by a Buff in nine years (1997, when Ryan Sutter had 170) and the highest count by a linebacker since Matt Russell had the same number when he won the Butkus Award in 1996. His 17 third down stops on the season were just one shy of the school record, as Chad Brown had 18 in 1992, a number equaled by Brian Iwuh in 2005. He also added two hurries, two chasedowns (near sacks), recovered two fumbles, forced one fumble, a pass deflection and two touchdown saves. The 19 tackles he had against NU tied for the most by a Buff in a single game since 1999, and he had 10 or more tackles in eight of 12 games on the year. He had 16 against Texas Tech (with a season high 11 solo), and 15 each in the Colorado State and Oklahoma games. He received the team’s Tom McMahon Award, given for dedication and work ethic. He was on the regular season watch list for the Dick Butkus Award (one of 65 candidates).
2005 (Soph.)— He played in all 13 games including the Champs Sports Bowl (12 starts, he deferred to hometown senior Akarika Dawn in the Big 12 title game). There was no sophomore jinx for him in following up his tremendous freshman year as he earned honorable mention All-Big 12 honors from the league coaches, as he tied for fifth on the team in tackles with 61 (42 solo) in 475 snaps from scrimmage. He had seven tackles for losses, including three quarterback sacks, along with five third down stops, four hurries, three quarterback chasedowns (near sacks) and a pass deflection. He had six tackles in five games, and had five stops in another five games; against Kansas and versus Texas in the Big 12 title game, he posted a season-best six solo stops. Against Missouri, he had five tackles, including a pair of quarterback sacks, and he was CU’s defensive lineman of the week in the Kansas State game when he posted six total tackles and a sack. He had four tackles, all solo, against Clemson in the bowl game. On special teams, he had two tackles, one inside-the-20, for three points. In the preseason, Street & Smith’s selected him as a first-team All-Big 12 Conference performer.
2004 (Fr.)—He enjoyed one of the finest seasons by a true freshman in school history, as he was CU’s first true frosh to ever be recognized with the conference’s Defensive Newcomer of the Year (Associated Press) and the Defensive Freshman of the Year (Big 12 Coaches) awards. The Sporting News and Rivals.com selected him as a second-team Freshman All-American, he earned honorable mention All-Big 12 honors from the AP, and TSN also selected him to its Freshman All-Big 12 team. Dizon led all freshmen in the conference in tackles with 82 (51 solo), which also established a CU true freshman record as he bettered the old total by some 15 stops (it was the second most tackles posted by a frosh, redshirt or true, missing a new mark by just four). He led the team in tackles from game one through game eight, eventually finishing third overall, easily the highest ever by a true freshman at CU (two others had previously finished seventh). He also had six tackles for loss, including one sack (against Texas), seven third down stops, four passes broken up, two touchdown saves, a forced fumble and one recovery. He had two big plays out of the gate, both of his touchdown saves: in the opener against Colorado State, he stuffed former Buff Marcus Houston at the 1-yard line on a second-and-goal run with less than 30 seconds remaining in a 27-24 Buff victory, and a week later at Washington State, he tackled quarterback Alex Brink at the 2, forcing a fumble that teammate Matt McChesney recovered with five seconds to go to preserve the 20-12 win. He had eight tackles in the opener (6 solo, along with a caused interception), and his 13 (9 solo) against WSU were the second most in a single-game by a CU true freshman. He had 10 stops (7 solo) against Texas and nine versus Missouri as he had at least four tackles in every game, five-plus in 10 games and six or more in eight contests. On special teams duty, he racked up seven points on the strength of four knockdown blocks on returns and two assisted tackles, one inside-the-20. When he reported to camp, the coaches had no idea what position he would play; they thought running back or safety would be his first home, but five days into drills after a trial at linebacker, it was evident that he was something special at the position. He would become the first true freshman to start a season opener at inside linebacker in school history, and he went on to start 11 games including the Houston Bowl (he played in all 13), tied for the most starts ever by a true freshman at Colorado. In the bowl win over UTEP, he had three solo tackles and a fumble recovery, the latter coming on the Miner’s first possession of the second half and led to a CU field goal. He won the Lee Willard Award, presented by the coaches, as the team’s most outstanding freshman, only the third inside linebacker to ever win the honor.
HIGH SCHOOL—As a senior, he was a Prep Football Report and PrepStar All-West regional team member, earning second-team all-state and Kauai Interscholastic Federation (KIF) All-Star honors. PFR ranked him as the No. 65 player in the region and the third ranked running back, calling him “potentially the top fullback on the west coast,” while Rivals.com ranked him as the No. 8 running back prospect nationally. He earned second-team all-state honors both as a sophomore and junior, when he was also selected as the KIF most valuable player. He was injured most of the regular season his senior year, rushing once for a 12 yard touchdown run but catching nine passes for 250 yards and three scores in just over two games (he played in four preseason games and rushed for about 600 yards). As a junior, he rushed 150 times for 1,157 yards and 13 touchdowns, with a long of 84, while catching 15 passes for 175 yards. He started at linebacker on defense and was in on 75 tackles. He also handled some of the punting chores in high school, and in the state semifinal as a junior, he pinned four punts inside-the-10 yardline. Top games: in a 55-0 win over Kapaa as a junior, he rushed for 37 times for 376 yards and five touchdowns; in a 42-35 win over Hawaii Prep Academy as a senior, he had 40 rushes for 315 yards and five scores; and in a win over Woodbridge his senior year, he had 33 carries for 275 yards and four TDs. Waimea was 6-2 his senior year and 6-1 his junior and sophomore seasons under coach Liko Pereira (not including preseason games), losing in the state semifinals all three seasons. He also lettered four times in basketball (forward), was a three-time Player of the Year/Island (KIF), as well as a three-time honorable mention all-state performer. He also lettered three times in track (sprints, the 100-meter KIF champion as a junior), and once in soccer.
ACADEMICS—He is majoring in Economics at Colorado and is on schedule to graduate in May. He earned second-team Academic All-Big 12 team honors as both a junior and senior. He was an honor roll member every quarter in high school, with his grade point average always at 3.5 or higher.
PERSONAL—He was born January 16, 1986 in Kauai, Hawai’i. Hobbies include fishing, diving and motocross. His high school, Waimea, is the westernmost high school in the United States, on the island of Kauai, the furthest west of the populated islands in the Hawaiian chain. (Last name is pronounced dye-zonn)