Auburn’s Lawson, Alabama’s Foster among Bednarik Award semifinalists

COLLEGE PARK, MD - NOVEMBER 15: Footballs sit lined up on the field before a college football game between the Michigan State Spartans and the Maryland Terrapins at Byrd Stadium on November 15, 2014 in College Park, Maryland. (Photo by Mitchell Layton/Getty Images)
COLUMBUS, Ga. – Auburn’s Carl Lawson and former Auburn High School standout Reuben Foster are among the semifinalists for the Bednarik Award. The official press release is below:


Press Release 

October 31, 2016- Philadelphia, PA


2016 Maxwell and Chuck Bednarik Award Semifinalists Announced


Maxwell Football Club President, Ron Jaworski, announced the 2016 Semifinalists for the 80th Maxwell Award for the Collegiate Player of the Year and the 22nd Chuck Bednarik Award for the Outstanding Defensive Player of the Year. The respective lists include a field of 18 candidates for the Maxwell and Bednarik Awards as selected by the Maxwell Football Club National Selection Committee. This year the Maxwell Football Club has partnered with Pro Football Focus (PFF) as a selection committee partner. PFF has provided detailed statistical and performance based assessments to selection committee staff, and several senior PFF analysts have been added to our committee and have participated in the selection process.

A very strong field of Maxwell Award semifinalists includes a representative from every Power Five FBS conference as well two student-athletes each from Alabama and Oklahoma. Clemson quarterback Deshaun Watson, LSU running back Leonard Fournette and Stanford running back Christian McCaffrey are returners from last year’s semifinalist list.

On the defensive side of the ball, the field of contenders is comprised of fresh faces, most of whom are making their debuts as Bednarik Award semifinalists. Four different conferences are represented, led by nine student-athletes from the SEC and three each from the Pac-12, Big Ten and ACC.

Last season, the Maxwell Award was presented to University of Alabama running back Derrick Henry and the Bednarik Award went to Temple linebacker Tyler Matakevich. Both players now play in the National Football League, Henry with the Tennessee Titans and Matakevich with the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Semifinalist voting for both of the collegiate awards presented by the Maxwell Football Club will begin on Tuesday November 1st and will close on November 21st. Three finalists for each award will be announced on November 22, 2016 and a second round of voting will take place at that time. Eligible voters include Maxwell Football Club members, NCAA head football coaches, sports information directors and selected national media. All Semifinalists are listed in alphabetical order with the player’s school, position and class designated.



Pro Football Focus (PFF) is the global leader in American football performance data and insights. We help teams win football games. 24 of 32 NFL teams and many College football programs take advantage of PFF data, insights and analysis for opponent scouting and game planning to free agency evaluation and draft preparation. We help media networks enhance their objective coverage of the game through the interpretation of player performance data and through the development of storylines that drive viewership. We help fans win the argument, the league, the bet. To provide this winning edge for team, media and fans, PFF expert analysts spend over 50 hours per game generating 140+ data points on every single play. This level of scrutiny and detail is unparalleled and generates in-depth player grading (patent pending), unique insights and predictions that can’t be found anywhere else. Every Game. Every Player. Every Play. PFF is headquartered in Cincinnati, Ohio USA.



2016 Maxwell Award Semifinalists:

First Name Last Name Position School Year
Jonathan Allen DE Alabama Senior
Jalen Hurts QB Alabama Freshman
Deshaun Watson QB Clemson Junior
Dalvin Cook RB Florida State Junior
Lamar Jackson QB Louisville Sophomore
Leonard Fournette RB LSU Junior
Jabrill Peppers ATH Michigan Sophomore
Mitch Trubisky QB North Carolina Junior
J.T. Barrett QB Ohio State Junior
Baker Mayfield QB Oklahoma Senior
Dede Westbrook WR Oklahoma Senior
Saquon Barkley RB Penn State Sophomore
Donnel Pumphrey RB San Diego State Senior
Christian McCaffrey RB Stanford Junior
Trevor Knight QB Texas A&M Senior
Patrick Mahomes II QB Texas Tech Junior
Jake Browning QB Washington Sophomore
Luke Falk QB Washington State Junior


2016 Chuck Bednarik Award Semifinalists:

First Name Last Name Position School Year
Jonathan Allen DE Alabama Senior
Reuben Foster LB Alabama Senior
Carl Lawson DE Auburn Junior
Cordrea Tankersley CB Clemson Senior
Christian Wilkins DE Clemson Sophomore
Jarrad Davis LB Florida Senior
Desmond King CB Iowa Senior
Arden Key DE LSU Sophomore
Tre’Davious White CB LSU Senior
Jabrill Peppers LB Michigan Sophomore
Nate Gerry S Nebraska Senior
Ejuan Price DE Pittsburgh Senior
Solomon Thomas DE Stanford Junior
Derek Barnett DE Tennessee Junior
Myles Garrett DE Texas A&M Junior
Hunter Dimick DE Utah Senior
Zach Cunningham LB Vanderbilt Junior
Budda Baker S Washington Junior

The winners of the 80th Maxwell Award and the 22nd Chuck Bednarik Award will be announced as part of the Home Depot College Football Awards Show, which will be broadcast live on ESPN on December 8, 2016. The formal presentation of these awards will be made at the Maxwell Football Club’s Awards Dinner on Friday, March 10, 2017 at the Tropicana Casino & Resort in Atlantic City, New Jersey. Questions regarding the Maxwell and Bednarik semifinalist lists can be directed to:

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