You know what this means, right? Yep, the 2012 season is slowly creeping up on us.
In the first of many, many of these to be released, the Lott Impact Trophy Award announced its watch list for the upcoming season. A total of 42 players from 37 schools and six conferences were represented on the initial watch list.
Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te’o is the only finalist for the 2011 award, won by Boston College LB Luke Kuechly, on the 2012 watch list. There are two 2011 semifinalists on the list — Ohio State defensive lineman John Simon and Oklahoma State cornerback Brodrick Brown.
The Big Ten paced all conferences with nine players on the list, followed by the Pac-12 with eight, the ACC and Big 12 with seven, the SEC with five and the Mountain West with two. Four players from independent programs are also among the first round of honorees.
A total of five schools were represented by two players each on the list — Florida State, Iowa State, LSU, Texas and Wisconsin.
Of the 42 players, 28 are seniors and 12 are juniors. There are just two sophomores on the initial watch list — Georgia LB Jarvis Jones and Purdue defensive tackle Kawaan Short.
Named after Pro Football Hall of Fame member, Ronnie Lott, The Lott Trophy is awarded to college football’s Defensive IMPACT Player of the Year. Founded in 2004, the Lott Trophy is the first and only college football award to equally recognize athletic performance and the personal character attributes of the player. The Lott Trophy is given to the player who exhibits the same characteristics Lott embodied during his distinguished career: Integrity, Maturity, Performance, Academics, Community and Tenacity. Voters for the award include selected members of the national media, previous finalists, the Board of Directors of the Pacific Club IMPACT Foundation and the Legends Coaches, which is a distinguished group of former college football head coaches.
Below and after the jump is the complete 2012 Lott Trophy watch list:
David Amerson, CB, North Carolina State
Johnthan Banks, CB, Mississippi State
Chris Borland, LB,. Wisconsin
John Boyett, FS. Oregon
Arthur Brown, LB, Kansas State
Brodrick Brown, CB, Oklahoma State
Jonathan Brown, LB, Illinois
Max Bullough, LB, Michigan State
Tra’ves Bush, S, Navy
Kyle Fuller, DB, Virginia Tech
Steve Greer, LB, Virginia
Gerald Hodges, LB, Penn State
Demontre Hurst, DB, Oklahoma
Jackson Jeffcoat, DE, Texas
Brandon Jenkins, DE, Florida State
Jarvis Jones, LB, Georgia
A.J. Klein, LB, Iowa State
Jake Knott, LB, Iowa State
Jordan Kovacs, S, Michigan
Patrick Larimore, LB, UCLA
Star Lotulelei, DT, Utah
Brandon Magee, LB, Arizona State
T.J. McDonald, S, USC
Sam Montgomery, DE, LSU
Brandon Ogletree, LB, BYU
Alex Okafor, DE, Texas
J.C. Percy, LB, Boise State
Ray Polk, S, Colorado
Jordan Poyer, CB, Oregon State
Kevin Reddick, LB, North Carolina
Eric Reid, S, LSU
Luke Ruff, S, Wyoming
Kawaan Short, DT, Purdue
John Simon, DT, Ohio State
Baker Steinkuhler, DT, Nebraska
Mike Taylor, LB, Wisconsin
Manti Te’o, LB, Notre Dame
Chase Thomas, LB, Stanford
Joe Vellano, DT, Maryland
Bjoern Warner, DE, Florida State
Zach Watts, LB, Army
Jesse Williams, DT, Alabama