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Week twelve continues with crucial playoff matchups across the board. After this week, one week remains for players to be named finalists.

Chuck Bednarik/Bronco Nagurski Award

The Chuck Bednarik Award is presented annually to the defensive player in college football.

1. Will Anderson

Junior, Alabama

  • Week 11 Stats: 4 Tackles, 1 Sack
  • Season Stats: 42 Tackles, 8 Sacks, 1 INT

2. Daiyan Henley

Senior, Washington State

  • Week 11 Stats: 10 Tackles
  • Season Stats: 95 Tackles, 4 Sacks, 2 FFs, 2 FRs, 1 INT, 1 PD

3. Ivan Pace Jr

Senior, Cincinnati

  • Week 11 Stats: 7 Tackles, 
  • Season Stats: 103 Tackles, 8 Sacks, 1 FF, 3 PDs

4. Ji'Ayir Brown

Senior, Penn State

  • Week 11 Stats: 3 Tackles, 1 PD
  • Season Stats: 55 Tackles, 2 Sacks, 2 FF, 3 PDs, 3 INTs

5. Drew Sanders

Junior, Arkansas

  • Week 11 Stats: 12 Tackles, 1 Sack
  • Season Stats: 86 Tackles, 8.5 Sacks, 3 FFs, 3 PDs

Will Anderson is Will Anderson. Daiyan Henley and Ivan Pace Jr are a half step behind and are closing in each week. Drew Sanders enters the top 5 in a switch with Clark Phillips, who is still a name to watch along with UTEP LB Tyrice Knight. These will most likely be my finalists, but there are still two weeks left for contenders to make a case for the top 5.  

Sep 1, 2022; West Lafayette, Indiana, USA; Penn State Nittany Lions cornerback Joey Porter Jr. (9) and Penn State Nittany Lions safety Ji'Ayir Brown (16) celebrate in the second half against the Purdue Boilermakers at Ross-Ade Stadium.

Sep 1, 2022; West Lafayette, Indiana, USA; Penn State Nittany Lions cornerback Joey Porter Jr. (9) and Penn State Nittany Lions safety Ji'Ayir Brown (16) celebrate in the second half against the Purdue Boilermakers at Ross-Ade Stadium.

Outland Trophy

The Outland Trophy is awarded to the best college football interior lineman.

1. Peter Skoronski

Junior, Northwestern

2. Jarrett Patterson

Senior, Notre Dame

3. John Michael Schmitz

Senior, Minnesota

4. Bryan Bresee

Sophomore, Clemson

5. Steve Avila

Senior, TCU

The list does not change this week. Peter Skoronski and Jarrett Patterson are unstoppable this year. Skoronski holds a healthy lead over the Irish center, but there is still time for Patterson to close the gap. Bryan Bresee is enduring a challenging time, yet he's out there every game making a massive impact for Clemson. Avila continues to rise on draft boards and finds himself at #5. Cooper Beebe is a name to watch in the closing weeks.

Sep 24, 2022; Norman, Oklahoma, USA; Kansas State Wildcats quarterback Adrian Martinez (9) celebrates with offensive lineman Cooper Beebe (50) after scoring a touchdown during the second half against the Oklahoma Sooners at Gaylord Family-Oklahoma Memorial Stadium.

Sep 24, 2022; Norman, Oklahoma, USA; Kansas State Wildcats quarterback Adrian Martinez (9) celebrates with offensive lineman Cooper Beebe (50) after scoring a touchdown during the second half against the Oklahoma Sooners at Gaylord Family-Oklahoma Memorial Stadium.

Dick Butkus Award

The Butkus Award is given annually to the top linebackers at the high school, collegiate, and professional levels of football.

1. Drew Sanders

Junior, Arkansas

  • Week 11 Stats: 12 Tackles, 1 Sack
  • Season Stats: 86 Tackles, 8.5 Sacks, 3 FFs, 3 PDs

2. Daiyan Henley

Senior, Washington State

  • Week 11 Stats: 10 Tackles
  • Season Stats: 95 Tackles, 4 Sacks, 2 FFs, 2 FRs, 1 INT, 1 PD

3. Ivan Pace Jr

Senior, Cincinnati

  • Week 11 Stats: 7 Tackles,
  • Season Stats: 103 Tackles, 8 Sacks, 1 FF, 3 PDs

4. Tyrice Knight

Senior, UTEP

  • Week 11 Stats: N/A
  • Season Stats: 87 Tackles, 1 Sack, 3 FFs, 1 FR, 4 PDs, 1 INT

5. Tommy Eichenberg

Senior, Ohio State

  • Week 11 Stats: 7 Tackles
  • Season Stats: 92 Tackles, 2.5 Sacks, 2 PDs, 1 INT
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Drew Sanders is proving himself by leading this Arkansas defense. Daiyan Henley has closed the gap on Sanders in the closing weeks. Ivan Pace Jr slides into #3, inches above Tyrice Knight and Tommy Eichenberg. Jack Campbell is a dark horse candidate for this award. Jack Campbell is the only player who can make noise in this top five otherwise, my finalists are set.

Sep 3, 2022; Norman, Oklahoma, USA; Oklahoma Sooners quarterback Dillon Gabriel (8) is tackled by UTEP Miners linebacker Tyrice Knight (10) during the first half at Gaylord Family-Oklahoma Memorial Stadium.

Sep 3, 2022; Norman, Oklahoma, USA; Oklahoma Sooners quarterback Dillon Gabriel (8) is tackled by UTEP Miners linebacker Tyrice Knight (10) during the first half at Gaylord Family-Oklahoma Memorial Stadium.

Thorpe Award

The Jim Thorpe Award is presented to the top defensive back in college football.

1. Ji'Ayir Brown

Senior, Penn State

  • Week 11 Stats: 3 Tackles, 1 PD
  • Season Stats: 55 Tackles, 2 Sacks, 2 FF, 3 PDs, 3 INTs

2. Gervarrius Owens

Senior, Houston

  • Week 11 Stats: 9 Tackles, 3 PDs
  • Season Stats: 62 Tackles, 7 PDs, 2 FFs, 2 FR, 1 INT

3. Jartavius "Quan" Martin

Senior, Illinois

  • Week 10 Stats: 4 Tackles, 2 PDs
  • Season Stats: 48 Tackles, 11 PDs, 3 INTs, 4 FFs, 2 FR

4. Clark Phillips III

Sophomore, Utah

  • Week 11 Stats: 1 PD
  • Season Stats: 21 Tackles, 1 Sack, 3 PDs, 5 INTs

5. Gabe Taylor

Sophomore, Rice

  • Week 11 Stats: 4 Tackles, 1 PD, 1 FF
  • Season Stats: 48 Tackles, 5 PDs, 2 INTs, 1 FF

Ji'Ayir Brown is having an impressive season for the Nittany Lions and is one of three Penn State players in my top 15 for this award. Gervarrius Owens stays at #2 with solid performances over the past four weeks. Jartavius "Quan" Martin impressed, allowing him to move to #3. Gabe Taylor had a solid week closing the gap to the #4 spot.

Sep 24, 2022; Tempe, Arizona, USA; Utah Utes cornerback Clark Phillips III (1) intercepts a pass intended for Arizona State Sun Devils wide receiver Charles Hall IV (0) during the first half at Sun Devil Stadium.

Sep 24, 2022; Tempe, Arizona, USA; Utah Utes cornerback Clark Phillips III (1) intercepts a pass intended for Arizona State Sun Devils wide receiver Charles Hall IV (0) during the first half at Sun Devil Stadium.

Ray Guy Award

The Ray Guy Award is presented annually to college football's most outstanding punter.

1. Bryce Baringer

Senior, Michigan State

  • Week 11 Stats: 3 Punts, 45.3 AVG, 64 Long, 3 In 20
  • Season Stats: 42 Punts, 49.6 AVG, 70 Long, 21 In 20

2. Joe Doyle

Senior, Memphis

  • Week 11 Stats: 6 Punts, 44.2 AVG, 57 Long, 4 In 20
  • Season Stats: 40 Punts, 47.3 AVG, 64 Long, 12 In 20

3. Mason Fletcher

Sophomore, Cincinnati

  • Week 11 Stats: 6 Punts, 46.5 AVG, 56 Long, 3 In 20
  • Season Stats: 47 Punts, 47.3 AVG, 84 Long, 25 In 20

4. Tory Taylor

Junior, Iowa

  • Week 11 Stats: 9 Punts, 43.4 AVG, 58 Long, 2 In 20
  • Season Stats: 64 Punts, 45.5 AVG, 70 Long, 24 In 20

5. Ben Kiernan

Senior, UNC

  • Week 10 Stats: 3 Punts, 41.7 AVG, 45 Long, 1 In 20
  • Season Stats: 31 Punts, 47.5 AVG, 70 Long, 11 In 20

Bryce Baringer is undoubtedly the best punter this year, averaging over 50 yards per punt, with 21/42 landing inside the 20. Joe Doyle received the nod over Fletcher due to his average punt yards. Mason Fletcher is there and can overtake him soon. Tory Taylor is at #4 as he is the MVP of Iowa football this year and deserves love. South Carolina Punter Kai Kroeger is a name to watch.

Sep 17, 2022; Columbia, South Carolina, USA; South Carolina Gamecocks punter Kai Kroeger (39) passes for a first down on a fake punt against the Georgia Bulldogs in the second quarter at Williams-Brice Stadium.

Sep 17, 2022; Columbia, South Carolina, USA; South Carolina Gamecocks punter Kai Kroeger (39) passes for a first down on a fake punt against the Georgia Bulldogs in the second quarter at Williams-Brice Stadium.