Unfortunately, we’ve hit one of the surest signs that the end of the college football season is fast approaching: the beginning of myriad announcements of award semifinalists.
The first major national honor to release its list is the Jim Thorpe Award, which revealed Monday a group of semifinalists that’s 15-players strong. The award is handed out annually to the nation’s top defensive back.
Of those 15 players, just one was a semifinalist in 2012: Oregon cornerback Ifo Ekpre-Olomu.
The Big 12, Pac-12 and SEC had three players each on the list, with the ACC and Big Ten coming in with two apiece. The AAC and MAC each had one semifinalist.
There are nine seniors and four juniors in the group. Florida’s Vernon Hargreaves is the lone freshman semifinalist, while Alabama’s Landon Collins is the only sophomore.
Last year’s winner was Mississippi State’s Johnthan Banks.
Below is the complete list of semifinalists.
C.J. Barnett, Sr. Ohio State
Deone Bucannon, Sr. Washington State
Landon Collins, Soph. Alabama
Aaron Colvin, Sr. Oklahoma
Darqueze Dennard, Sr. Michigan State
Ifo Ekpre-Olomu, Jr. Oregon
Kyle Fuller, Sr. Virginia Tech
Vernon Hargreaves, Fr. Florida
Lamarcus Joyner, Sr., Florida State
Steven Nelson, Jr. Oregon State
Cody Prewitt, Jr. Ole Miss
Calvin Pryor, Jr. Louisville
Jason Verrett, Sr. TCU
Jimmie Ward, Sr. N. Illinois
Ty Zimmerman, Sr. Kansas State