DALLAS — De’Jon Harris added another honor to his résumé when The Football Writers Association of America named him to its 2018 Bronko Nagurski Trophy Watch List on Tuesday
The Bronko Nagurski Trophy is given annually to the National Defensive Player of the Year. The award is named for legendary two-way player from the University of Minnesota, Bronko Nagurski, who dominated college football then became a star for the Chicago Bears in the 1930s. Penn State has never won a Nagurski Trophy, but has had five finalists, most recently Carl Nassib in 2015.
An All-SEC selection last season, Harris led the Razorbacks in total tackles (115), tackles for loss (8.5) and sacks (3.5). His 115 total tackles and 66 solo stops each ranked third in the Southeastern Conference. He recorded 10 or more tackles in seven games, including six in SEC play to tie for the league lead.
On Monday, Harris joined teammate Dre Greenlaw on the Butkus Award’s preseason watch list, and last week, Harris was named to the Bednarik Award’s preseason watch list as well as the preseason All-SEC Third Team voted on by media in attendance at SEC Media Days.
The FWAA and the Charlotte Touchdown Club will announce five finalists for the 2018 Bronko Nagurski Trophy on Nov. 14. The winner will be chosen from those five finalists. The FWAA All-America Committee, after voting input from the association’s full membership, selects a 26-man All-America Team and eventually the Nagurski Trophy finalists. Committee members, by individual ballot, select the winner they regard as the best defensive player in college football.
This year’s watch list includes at least four players from each of the 10 FBS conferences. The SEC (16) leads the 97-member list.