The Maxwell Football Club today announced its watch lists for the 78th annual Maxwell Award and the 20th annual Chuck Bednarik Award.
The Maxwell Award, named in honor of Robert W. "Tiny" Maxwell, has been given to America's College Player of the Year since 1937. Maxwell's contributions to the game of football were extensive, including as a player, a sportswriter and an official. The Bednarik Award has been presented to the College Defensive Player of the Year since 1995. Chuck Bednarik, former standout at Penn and with the Philadelphia Eagles, is a member of both the College Football Hall of Fame's Class of '69 and the NFL Hall of Fame's Class of '67.
The watch lists will once again incorporate a broad spectrum of Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) programs and conferences from coast to coast. Returning Maxwell Award semifinalists from 2013 include Wisconsin RB Melvin Gordon, Oregon State QB Sean Mannion, Oregon QB Marcus Mariota, Baylor QB Bryce Petty and returning Maxwell Award finalist Florida State QB Jameis Winston. The Seminoles have placed three players on the list, as RB Karlos Williams and WR Rashad Greene join Winston. Three athletes also represent Baylor, Oregon, and USC, but Alabama leads the pack with four.
The Chuck Bednarik Award watch list features three of last season's semifinalists, Clemson DE Vic Beasley, Oregon CB Ifo Ekpre-Olomu and USC DE Leonard Williams. Notably, Georgia landed three linebackers on the list, Leonard Floyd, Jordan Jenkins, and Ramik Wilson. And despite Stanford losing four of its best defensive players to the NFL Draft, the Cardinal still leads all teams with four players represented.
Last season, Alabama QB AJ McCarron and Pittsburgh DT Aaron Donald both made history by becoming the first players from their schools to ever win the Maxwell Award and Chuck Bednarik Award, respectively. McCarron was drafted in the fifth round by the Cincinnati Bengals, while Aaron Donald was taken No. 13 overall by the St. Louis Rams, where he will join one of the NFL's elite defensive lines.
Semifinalists for the Maxwell and Bednarik Awards will be announced November 3, 2014, while the three finalists for each award will be unveiled November 24, 2014. The winners of the 2013 Maxwell and Bednarik Awards will be announced as part of the Home Depot College Football Awards Show held on December 11, 2014. The formal presentations of these awards will be made at the Maxwell Football Club Awards Gala hosted by Revel Casino Hotel Atlantic City on March 6, 2015.
The watch list candidates have been chosen by the Maxwell Football Club's selection committee, which analyzes both past performance and future potential. The Club reserves the right to make additions and deletions to these lists as the 2014 season unfolds. All members of the Maxwell Football Club, NCAA sports information directors, FBS head coaches and selected national media are eligible to vote for the awards.
The Maxwell and Chuck Bednarik Awards are members of the National College Football Awards Association (NCFAA) which encompasses the most prestigious awards in college football. The 21 awards boast 699 years of tradition-selection excellence. Visit www.NCFAA.org to learn more about our story.
The members of the NCFAA are unveiling their preseason watch lists over a 12-day period this month. Fifteen of the association's 21 awards select a preseason watch list and the NCFAA has spearheaded a coordinated effort to promote each award's preseason candidates. Following is the complete 2014 preseason watch list calendar:
Mon., July 7: Bednarik Award / Maxwell Award
Tue., July 8: Mackey Award / Rimington Trophy
Wed., July 9: Lou Groza Award / Ray Guy Award
Thurs., July 10: Bronko Nagurski Trophy / Outland Trophy
Fri., July 11: Jim Thorpe Award
Mon., July 14: Butkus Award / Rotary Lombardi Award
Tue., July 15: Biletnikoff Award
Wed., July 16: Davey O'Brien Award
Thurs., July 17: Doak Walker Award
Fri., July 18: Walter Camp Award
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