Fifteen SEC players made the cut Monday on the watch list for the Bednarik Award, an honor presented annually to the top defensive player in college football. The league’s impressive representation on the 76-player list is no surprise given the returning talent on the defensive side of the football this season.
Three Georgia linebackers headline the list under first-year defensive coordinator Jeremy Pruitt followed by players representing nine other programs including 2013 All-SEC first teamers Cody Prewitt (Ole Miss), Vernon Hargreaves (Florida) and A.J. Johnson (Tennessee).
Three SEC players have won the Bednarik over the last decade — LSU’s Tyrann Mathieu (2011), Patrick Peterson (2010) and Georgia’s David Pollack (2004).
SEC players on the 2014 Bednarik Award watch list
Alabama: Landon Collins, S; Trey DePriest, LB; A’Shawn Robinson, DE
Arkansas: Trey Flowers, DE
Auburn: Robenson Therezie, S
Florida: Dante Fowler, DE; Vernon Hargreaves, CB
Georgia: Leonard Floyd, LB; Ramik Wilson, LB; Jordan Jenkins, LB
Kentucky: Alvin Dupree, DE
Mississippi: Cody Prewitt, S
Mississippi State: Benardrick McKinney, LB
Missouri: Markus Golden, DE
Tennessee: A.J. Johnson, LB