You know the college football season isn’t that far off when the names start circulating for all the preseason national award watch lists.
This is the week that every year is unofficially designated as college football watch-list week. The preseason watch lists were publicly revealed on Monday for the Maxwell Award, the Bednarik Award and the Paul Hornung Award. As you might expect, a number of Big 12 players are included on those national lists.
Six Baylor Bears, for example, have been named to the preseason watch lists for three different individual awards. Quarterback Bryce Petty, running back Shock Linwood and wide receiver Antwan Goodley are among 77 college players named to the preseason watch list for the Maxwell Award, which is conferred annually on the player believed to be the best college player in the country for that season.
Joining the three Baylor offensive stars on Maxwell Award watch list are Texas running backs Jonathan Gray and Malcolm Brown, wide receiver Tyler Lockett of Kansas State, quarterback Trevor Knight of Oklahoma, and Davis Webb, sophomore quarterback at Texas Tech.
Fourteen Big 12 defensive players are on the Bednarik Award watch list for this coming season. The Bednarik Award, named after the great Philadelphia Eagles Hall of Famer who played both on offense and defense, honors the best defensive player in college football.
Early candidates for the Bednarik Award from the Big 12 include three each from Texas, Oklahoma and TCU. Big 12 players on the watch list are: defensive tackle Malcolm Brown, cornerback Quandre Diggs and defensive end Cedric Reed, all from Texas. From Oklahoma: defensive end Charles Tapper and linebackers Eric Striker and Frank Shannon; defensive tackle Chucky Hunter, cornerback Sam Carter and defensive end Devonte Fields from TCU; linebacker Bryce Hager and defensive end Shawn Oakman from Baylor; linebacker Ben Heeney of Kansas; safety Karl Joseph of West Virginia, and defensive end Ryan Mueller from Kansas State.
The Paul Hornung Award is presented annually to the most versatile player (all-purpose) in college football. Five all-purpose players from the Big 12 are among the 47 candidates from around the country that are on the 2014 preseason watch list for this award.
The Paul Hornung preseason selections from the Big 12 include a player each from Kansas State, TCU, Iowa State, Texas Tech and Baylor. The five are Tyler Lockett of Kansas State, B.J. Catalon of TCU, Aaron Wimberly of Iowa State, Kenny Williams of Texas Tech and Levi Norwood of Baylor.
Each of the award watch lists will be pared down a couple of times before arriving at a list of finalists. The winners will be announced after the regular season.