While the official list won’t be released until 8 ET Wednesday night, the names of a couple of players who have made the Biletnikoff Award’s preseason watch list have been confirmed, including a player who hasn’t played at the Div. 1-A level since 2009.
The blog Gold and Blue Zone reported earlier today that West Virginia wide receiver Tavon Austin has been named to the initial Biletnikoff watch list.
Additionally, the Birmingham News has confirmed with the Tallahassee Quarterback Club that Alabama receivers Darius Hanks and Duron Carter are on the list as well. Carter’s inclusion is mildly surprising — or severely head-scratching depending on your view.
Carter left Ohio State in June of 2010 due to academic issues, and spent the 2010 season at the JUCO level. The son of former OSU and NFL great Cris Carter transferred to the Tide in early April but did not participate in spring practice.
(Incidentally, the News also reports that Carter was hoping to enroll at the school for the second summer semester but that process recently hit “a snag”.)
Making the decision to include Carter all the more odd is the fact that Alabama’s leading returning receiver, Marquis Maze, didn’t make the initial cut.
Obviously, these preseason watch lists are almost meaningless as the real cuts to the semifinalists and finalists occur after X amount of games have been played, but it’s interesting that Carter — and to some degree Hanks as well — received the nod over Maze.
UPDATED 8:04 p.m. ET: As it turns out, the report from the Birmingham News was incorrect as Maze is indeed on the preseason watch list. We apologize for any inconvenience and/orconsternation this may have caused members of Tide Nation.