You know you how you can tell another season is quickly beginning to wind down? Awards begin to whittle their lengthy preseason watch lists down to quarterfinalists or semifinalists.
The first to get down to its quarterfinalists was the Lott IMPACT Trophy, which announced its group of 20 Wednesday. There were two quarterfinalists from a year ago that made the cut this time around: Oregon cornerback Ifo Ekpre-Olomu and UCLA linebacker Eric Kendricks.
The Pac-12 led all conferences with seven players selected. The ACC and SEC had four players apiece, while the Big Ten and Big 12 had two each. There were no players from the Non-Power Five conferences as Notre Dame claims the remaining player.
Washington was the only school with two players included.
Linebackers and defensive ends had the most players for positions with eight and six, respectively. Cornerbacks, safeties and defensive tackles accounted for two apiece.
The Lott Trophy, named after Hall of Famer Ronnie Lott, is presented annually to the player who best embodies the award’s six tenets — Integrity, Maturity, Performance, Academics, Community and Tenacity. Last year’s winner was UCLA linebacker Anthony Barr.
Eight semifinalists for the award will be announced Nov. 11. In a release, the award states that “four finalists will fly to Newport Beach for a black-tie gala at the Pacific Club on Dec. 14 where the winner will be announced.”
Below is the complete list of 20 Lott IMPACT quarterfinalists.
Vic Beasley, DE, Clemson
Shilique Calhoun, DE, Michigan State
Henry Coley, LB, Virginia
Landon Collins, S, Alabama
Ronald Darby, CB, Florida State
Michael Doctor, LB, Oregon State
Bud Dupree, DE, Kentucky
Ifo Ekpre-Olomu, CB, Oregon
Randy Gregory, DE, Nebraska
David Helton, LB, Duke
A.J. Johnson, LB, Tennessee
Eric Kendricks, LB, UCLA
Hau’oli Kikaha, DE, Washington
Ryan Mueller, DE, Kansas State
Jordan Richards, S, Stanford
Deterrian Shackelford, LB, Ole Miss
Danny Shelton, DT, Washington
Eric Striker, LB, Oklahoma
Jaylon Smith, LB, Notre Dame
Leonard Williams, DT, USC