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Jul 20, 2020

Kendrick Named to Thorpe Award Watch List

The Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame and Jim Thorpe Association announced today that Clemson cornerback Derion Kendrick has been named as one of 49 players on the watch list for the Jim Thorpe Award. Additional information from award organizers is included below.

Oklahoma City – The Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame (OSHOF) and Jim Thorpe Association release today the prestigious Paycom Jim Thorpe Award preseason watch list. This list includes 49 of the nation’s best defensive backs, representing 10 conferences. The preseason watch list is selected by a screening committee whose members compile a list of up to 50 players. This list is not final and players who have outstanding seasons may be added as the season progresses.

Paulson Adebo, Stanford, Sr.
Reed Blankenship, Middle Tennessee State, Sr.
Eric Burrell, Wisconsin, Sr.
Camryn Bynum, California, Sr.
T.J. Carter, Memphis, Sr.
Andre Cisco, Syracuse, So.
Kenderick Duncan, Jr., Georgia Southern, Jr.
Greg Eisworth, Iowa State, Sr.
Kaiir Elam, Florida, So.
Caleb Farley, Virginia Tech, Jr.
Paris Ford, Pitt, Jr.
Kaleb Ford-Dement, Old Dominion, Jr.
Darrick Forrest, Cincinnati, Sr.
Ahmad Gardner, Cincinnati, So.
Thomas Graham, Jr., Oregon, Sr.
Richie Grant, UCF, Sr.
Darren Hall, San Diego State, Jr.
Brontae Harris, UAB, Sr.
Kolby Harvell-Peel, Oklahoma State, Jr.
Tyrone Hill, Buffalo, Sr.
Jevon Holland, Oregon, Jr.
Talanoa Hufanga, USC, Jr.
Shaun Jolly, Appalachian State, Jr.
Kekaula Kaniho, Boise State, Sr.
Derion Kendrick, Clemson, Jr.
Richard LeCounte, Georgia, Sr.
Trevon Moehrig, TCU, Jr.
Elijah Molden, Washington, Sr.
Israel Mukuamu, South Carolina, Jr.
Hamsah Nasirildeen, Florida State, Sr.
Dell Pettus, Troy, So.
Antonio Phillips, Ball State, Sr.
Aaron Robinson, UCF, Sr.
Emmanuel Rugamba, Miami (OH), Sr.
Caden Sterns, Texas, So.
JaCoby Stevens, LSU, Sr.
Derek Stingley, Jr., LSU, So.
Eric Stokes, Georgia, Jr.
Corey Straughter, ULM, Sr.
Patrick Surtain II, Alabama, Jr.
Ambry Thomas, Michigan, Sr.
Tariq Thompson, San Diego State, Sr.
Amechi Uzodinma, Ball State, Jr.
Shaun Wade, Ohio State, Jr.
Lamont Wade, Penn State, Sr.
Jalen Walker, Boise State, Sr.
Jermaine Waller, Virginia Tech, Jr.
Sterling Weatherford, Miami (OH), Jr.
James Wiggins, Cincinnati, Sr.

By Conference: AAC (6), ACC (6), BIG 10 (4), BIG 12 (4), C-USA (3), MAC (5), MW (4), PAC-12 (6), SEC (7), SUN BELT (4)

A preseason watch list is compiled by the Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame based on previous performance and preseason All-America lists. A screening committee, consisting of OSHOF members, monitor the watch list players and narrow the field to 10 to 15 semifinalists on the first Monday of November. This committee reconvenes on the Monday before Thanksgiving to select three award finalists. The three finalists are submitted to a national panel of over 250 sports writers, sportscasters, former players and coaches who vote to determine the winner of the Paycom Jim Thorpe Award.

All three finalists are invited and required to attend The Home Depot College Football Awards Show Presented by Gildan, broadcast live on ESPN from Atlanta, Georgia, where the winner is announced. Other recognized National College Football Awards Association (NCFAA) awards announced include the Bednarik Award, Maxwell Award, Mackey Award, Rimington Trophy, Lou Groza Award, Ray Guy Award, Bronko Nagurski Award, Outland Trophy, Butkus Award, Lombardi Award, Biletnikoff Award, Davey O’Brien Award, Doak Walker Award and Walter Camp Award.

The official presentation of the Paycom Jim Thorpe Award takes place in Oklahoma City, following ESPN’s live presentation at The Home Depot College Football Awards Show. The current winner and all former winners are invited each year to celebrate. Over 600 supporters attend the Paycom Jim Thorpe Award Banquet each year, including many celebrities and dignitaries.

The Paycom Jim Thorpe Award is awarded to the best defensive back in college football based on performance on the field, athletic ability and character. The award was established in 1986 and is named after history’s greatest all-around athlete, Jim Thorpe. Thorpe excelled as a running back, passer and kicker on the offensive side of the ball, but also stood out as a defensive back. In addition to his legendary performance on the football field, Thorpe played professional baseball and won Olympic gold medals in the decathlon and pentathlon. The Paycom Jim Thorpe Award is universally accepted as one of the nation’s top collegiate sports honors.

About the National College Football Awards Association
The Paycom Jim Thorpe Award is a member of the National College Football Awards Association (NCFAA), which encompasses college football’s most prestigious awards. Founded in 1997, the NCFAA and its 25 awards now boast over 800 recipients, dating to 1935. Visit to learn more about the association.

The members of the NCFAA are unveiling their preseason watch lists over a two-week period this month. Fourteen of the association’s awards select a preseason watch list and the NCFAA has spearheaded a coordinated effort to promote each award’s preseason candidates. Following is the complete 2020 preseason watch list calendar:

  • Mon., July 13: Bednarik Award
  • Tues., July 14: Davey O’Brien Award
  • Wed., July 15: Doak Walker Award
  • Thurs., July 16: Biletnikoff Award
  • Fri., July 17: Mackey Award
  • Mon., July 20: Butkus Award & Paycom Jim Thorpe Award
  • Tues., July 21: Bronko Nagurski Trophy & Outland Trophy
  • Wed., July 22: Lou Groza Award & Ray Guy Award
  • Thurs., July 23: Paul Hornung Award & Wuerffel Trophy
  • Fri., July 24: Maxwell Award