On Tuesday, 16 semifinalists were announced for the Chuck Bednarik Award, given to the nation’s top defensive player in the country for the season.
So far, it’s a senior-heavy list, displaying that experience still matters a bunch in the college football game, especially on the defensive side of the ball.
Probably the two most glaring absences on the list are two players who were finalists for last year’s award, South Carolina DE Jadeveon Clowney and Arizona State DE Will Sutton, who so far have not been able to replicate their success from last year. (List via College Football Talk)
Notre Dame LB Manti Te’o beat out Clowney for last year’s award during the Irish’s magical run to the BCS Championship Game.
As you can see, as far as conference breakdown, the ACC leads the way with five total representatives on the list. The Pac-12 was next in line with four, followed by the SEC and Big Ten who landed two apiece on the roster.
The award is given out every year during the Home Depot College Football Awards following the completion of the regular season.