PHILADELPHIA – BYU defensive end Bronson Kaufusi has been named to the watch list for the 21st annual Chuck Bednarik Award by the Maxwell Football Club Tuesday.
The Bednarik Award has been presented to the college defensive player of the year since 1995. Chuck Bednarik, former standout at Penn and with the Philadelphia Eagles, is a member of both the College Football Hall of Fame's Class of '69 and the NFL Hall of Fame's Class of '67.
The versatile 6-foot-7, 265-pounder from Provo is BYU’s active leader in career sacks with 16, tied for No. 22 in school history. In 2014, Kaufusi led the Cougars with seven sacks and 11.5 tackles for loss. He posted 43 total tackles and had seven quarterback hurries, six pass breakups, one forced fumble and one fumble recovery.
Kaufusi is a 2015 Preseason Phil Steele All-Independent team selection. In 2014 he earned College Sports Madness and Phil Steele All-Independent team honors.
The Chuck Bednarik Award watch list is headlined by 2014 winner Arizona linebacker Scooby Wright and features six of last year’s semifinalists. Last season’s runner-up for the award, Ohio State defensive end Joey Bosa, joins other returning semifinalists, including Michigan State defensive end Shilique Calhoun, Florida cornerback Vernon Hargreaves III, Baylor defensive back Shawn Oakman and Notre Dame linebacker Jaylon Smith. Florida State defensive back Jalen Ramsey, Alabama linebacker A’Shawn Robinson and Virginia Tech cornerback Kendall Fuller are impact players coming off breakout sophomore seasons.
Wright has a chance to join Northwestern’s Pat Fitzgerald and Penn State’s Paul Posluszny as the only two-time Bednarik Award winners.
The Maxwell Football Club is a member of the National College Football Awards Association (NCFAA) which encompasses the most prestigious awards in college football. The 22 awards boast over 700 years of tradition selection excellence.
Beginning in 2015, The Home Depot College Football Awards will have a new home at the College Football Hall of Fame and Chick-fil-A Fan Experience in downtown Atlanta. Airing live on ESPN on December 10, 2015, college football’s brightest stars will be honored for their performance on and off the field.
Semifinalists for the Bednarik Award will be announced November 2, 2015, while the three finalists will be unveiled November 23, 2015. The winner of the 2015 Bednarik Award will be announced as part of the Home Depot College Football Awards Show held on Dec. 10, 2015. The formal presentation of the will be made at the Maxwell Football Club Awards Gala hosted by Tropicana Hotel & Casino Atlantic City on March 11, 2015.