Texas Longhorns junior linebacker Malik Jefferson is one of 85 players named to the Bednarik Award watch list, the Maxwell Football Club announced on Monday.
The Bednarik Award is given to the nation’s best defensive player. Jefferson was also named to the preseason watch list in 2016.
Malik Jefferson. Bednarik Award watch list for College Football's Defensive Player of the Year. #ThisIsTexas #HookEm pic.twitter.com/CWVaI6icYI— Texas Football (@TexasFootball) July 10, 2017
The 2017 @BednarikAward Watch List is out… pic.twitter.com/rop2ZHD8pj— Kevin McGuire (@KevinOnCFB) July 10, 2017
This isn’t the first preseason accolade Jefferson has earned — he was named a Sporting News preseason All-American earlier this month, and was a preseason Big 12 All-Conference first team selection by Athlon Sports in May.
Jefferson recorded a team third-best 62 tackles, and notched 8.5 tackles for a loss and 5.5 sacks as a sophomore. He was named to the All-Big 12 second team by the Associated Press in 2016.