The Maxwell Award has cut down it’s list of 78 players to announce this year’s semifinalists for the award. Out of the semifinalists, only one player — USC quarterback Matt Barkley — was nominated for the award last season. Ultimately, the 2011 Maxwell Award went to Stanford quarterback Andrew Luck.
This year, Heisman Trophy favorite Collin Klein leads the list of 16 semifinalists and was one of two Big 12 players and seven quarterbacks to make the cut. The Pac-12 had the most semifinalists with 5, while the SEC ranked second with four.
A total of 13 offensive players made the list of semifinalists and just two defensive players got the honors. Here is the full list of Maxwell Award semifinalists:
- Montee Ball, RB, Wisconsin
- Matt Barkley, QB, USC
- Kenjon Barner, RB, Oregon
- Giovani Bernard, RB, North Carolina
- Johnathan Franklin, RB, UCLA
- Mike Gillislee, RB, Florida
- Jarvis Jones, LB, Georgia
- Collin Klein, QB, Kansas State
- Marqise Lee, WR, USC
- EJ Manuel, QB, Florida State
- Johnny Manziel, QB, Texas A&M
- AJ McCarron, QB, Alabama
- Braxton Miller, QB, Ohio State
- Geno Smith, QB, West Virginia
- Manti Te’o, LB, Notre Dame
- De’Anthony Thomas, RB, Oregon
The three finalists for the award will be announced on November 19th — the Maxwell Award will be to the winner on December 6th. The Maxwell Award is given to the player who is deemed best football player in the country.