Auburn & Bama Players Added to Preseason Watch Lists
By: Alabama News Network
MONTGOMERY, AL— The annual unveiling of preseason watch lists for major national college football awards began Tuesday, and, as usual, both Alabama and Auburn had plenty of representatives.
Auburn junior quarterback Jeremy Johnson and senior receiver Dhaquille Williams joined Alabama junior running back Derrick Henry among 80 players nationwide named to the Maxwell Award preseason watch list on Tuesday.
The Maxwell Award is annually presented to the nation’s college football player of the year. Quarterbacks have won the award 11 of the past 12 years, including Oregon’s Marcus Mariota last year and Alabama’s A.J. McCarron in 2013.
On the other side of the ball, a pair of key Crimson Tide defenders in senior linebacker Reggie Ragland and junior defensive tackle A’Shawn Robinson joined Auburn senior linebacker Cassanova McKinzy among 80 players nationwide on the preseason watch list for the Chuck Bednarik Award, annually given to the nation’s top defensive player.
Another pair of Alabama players were mentioned as candidates for positional awards on Wednesday. Senior center Ryan Kelly, a three year starter with the Tide, was among 63 centers nationwide named to the Rimington Award preseason watch list, joining seven other centers from the SEC. Alabama junior tight end O.J. Howard, who is expected to have an even bigger role in the Tide offense this coming season, was among 33 tight ends nationwide named to the Mackey Award preseason watch list..
Auburn’s Reese Dismukes won the Rimington last season and former Alabama standout Barrett Jones, who Kelly replaced as the Tide’s starting center, won the award in 2012.
Semifinalists for both the Maxwell and Bednarik awards will be narrowed down and announced on Nov. 2 with finalists determined Nov. 23.
All four awards will be presented to the winners at the Home Depot College Football Awards Show on Dec. 10.