College football award watch lists: Pac-12 players honored before 2015 season

George Frey/Getty

It's the most wonderful time of the year - if your idea of an amazing experience is lists of the best college football players in the nation.

Between July 6 and July 17, more than a dozen watch lists for everything from most outstanding player to most outstanding punter (Hi, Tom Hackett!) will be unveiled by the National College Football Awards Association and other national organizations that honor the nation's top players and coaches.

Check back to this page each day to see which Pac-12 players are on each list as they're unveiled.

July 17 - Walter Camp Award

Known to many as the father of American football, Walter Camp helped grow the sport until it transcended into the fabric of the American culture. The line of scrimmage and four downs? You can thank Mr. Camp for those. You can also thank him for being the namesake of the the Walter Camp Award, given annually to the collegiate player of the year. The Conference of Champions boasts 11 student-athletes on this year's Walter Camp Award watch list:

  • Devontae Booker, RB, Utah
  • Su'a Cravens, LB, USC
  • Royce Freeman, RB, Oregon
  • Jared Goff, QB, California
  • Kevin Hogan, QB, Stanford
  • Myles Jack, LB/RB, UCLA
  • Cody Kessler, QB, USC
  • Blake Martinez, LB, Stanford
  • Paul Perkins, RB, UCLA
  • Anu Solomon, QB, Arizona
  • Scooby Wright III, LB, Arizona

July 16 - Davey O'Brien Award and Doak Walker Award

The Conference of Champions boasts four elite quarterbacks on the 2015 Davey O'Brien National Quarterback Award watch list, given annually to the best QB in the NCAA. You might recall a certain Oregon quarterback who won the award in 2014 (#MahaloMarcus). It's up to one of these four to defend the title for the Pac-12 in the year to come:

  • Jared Goff, California
  • Kevin Hogan, Stanford
  • Cody Kessler, USC
  • Anu Solomon, Arizona

To say the Pac-12 has a stable of running back talent heading into the 2015 football season would be an understatement. Twelve ball carriers from the Conference of Champions are on the 2015 Doak Walker Award watch list. The trophy is presented each year to the nation's best running back. Former Oregon Duck LaMichael James was the last RB from the Pac-12 to win the award in 2010. This year's Doak Walker nominees are as follows:

  • Devontae Booker, Utah
  • Justin Davis, USC
  • Royce Freeman, Oregon
  • Daniel Lasco, California
  • Tre Madden, USC
  • Christian McCaffrey, Stanford
  • Paul Perkins, UCLA
  • Christian Powell, Colorado
  • Demario Richard, Arizona State
  • Thomas Tyner, Oregon
  • Dwayne Washington, Washington
  • Nick Wilson, Arizona

July 15 - Fred Biletnikoff Award and Wuerffel Trophy

Leaping to the forefront of the 2015 Biletnikoff Award watch list are six of the Pac-12's best wide receivers who are likely to catch big some attention along with footballs this fall. Presented annually to nation's most outstanding receiver, former Beaver Brandin Cooks was the last Pac-12er to win the coveted distinction in 2013. This year's pre-season contenders are as follows:

  • Victor Bolden, Oregon State
  • River Cracraft, Washington State
  • Cayleb Jones, Arizona
  • Byron Marshall, Oregon
  • Jordan Payton, UCLA
  • Nelson Spruce, Colorado

Community service and academic achievement are the two pillars of college football's Wuerffel Trophy, presented annually in honor of 1996 Heisman Trophy winner Danny Wuerffel. Former USC gunslinger Matt Barkley was the last from the Pac-12 to win the award in 2012. For their exemplary servant leadership and scholastic aptitude, these eight student-athletes are on the 2015 Wuerffel Trophy watch list:

  • Casey Skowron, K, Arizona
  • Michael Bercovici, QB, Arizona State
  • Stefan  McClure, DB, California
  • Will Hopkins, OL, Oregon State
  • Jake Brendel, OL, UCLA
  • Cody Kessler, QB, USC
  • Kenneth Scott, WR, Utah
  • Jeremiah Allison, LB, Washington State

July 14 - Butkus Award and Rotary Lombardi Award

The name "Butkus" and linebacker supremacy go hand-in-hand, and these 11 Pac-12 student-athletes on the 2015 Butkus Award watch list certainly fit the mold. One of these run-stopping, quarterback-devouring phenoms needs to win the honor this year to defend former UCLA linebacker Eric Kendricks' 2014 Butkus win for the Pac-12. In the meantime, look for one of these guys messing up a backfield near you very soon: 

  • Su'a Cravens, USC
  • Travis Feeney, Washington
  • Myles Jack, UCLA
  • Peter Kalambayi, Stanford
  • Cory Littleton, Washington
  • Antonio Longino, Arizona State
  • Blake Martinez, Stanford
  • Jared Norris, Utah
  • Anthony Sarao, USC
  • Jason Whittingham, Utah
  • Scooby Wright III, Arizona

When it comes to the Rotary Lombardi Award, it's all about the guys in the trenches. The hog mollies. On either side of the ball, the Lombardi Award is given annually to the best collegiate player who lines up no more than a few yards off of the line of scrimmage. The Conference of Champions boasts 12 nominees on the 2015 Lombardi Award watch list, beginning with 2014 Lombardi award winner Scooby "Two-star Scoob" Wright III:

  • Scooby Wright III, LB, Arizona
  • DeForest Buckner, DE, Oregon
  • Tyler Johnstone, OL, Oregon
  • Isaac Seumalo, C, Oregon State 
  • Joshua Garnett, OL, Stanford
  • Blake Martinez, LB, Stanford
  • Kenny Clark, DT, UCLA
  • Myles Jack, LB, UCLA
  • Caleb Benenoch, OL, UCLA
  • Eddie Vanderdoes, DL, UCLA
  • Max Tuerk, C, USC
  • Hunter Dimick, DE, Utah

July 13 - Jim Thorpe Award and Bobby Dodd Coach of the Year Award

Given annually to the top defensive back in the nation, the Jim Thorpe Award watch list boasts five DBs from the Conference of Champions. Four of them have appeared on several other watch lists which were unveiled last week. They all will look to be the first Pac-12 player to earn the Thorpe since 2007, when Arizona's Antoine Cason brought the honor back to Tucson.

  • Ishmael Adams, UCLA
  • Budda Baker, Washington
  • Adoree' Jackson, USC
  • Fabian Moreau, UCLA
  • Jordan Simone, Arizona State

Late last week, the Peach Bowl announced the 23 coaches who were on the preseason watch list for the Bobby Dodd Coach of the Year Award, and it includes four of the Pac-12's finest. It includes Arizona head coach Rich Rodriguez, who earned the Pac-12 Coach of the Year honor in 2014. Washington State boasts the Pac-12's only Dodd Award, as Mike Price won it in 1997.

  • Mark Helfrich, Oregon
  • Jim Mora, UCLA
  • Rich Rodriguez, Arizona
  • Kyle Whittingham, Utah

July 10 - Bronko Nagurski Trophy and Outland Trophy

A wise football mind once declared that those who win the trenches will find success. That's what Friday's watch lists are all about. 

Ten Pac-12 players appear on this year's Bronko Nagurski Trophy watch list, the award given annually to America's top defensive player. And what do you know? One of them is Arizona's Scooby Wright III, the man who won the award in 2014. The players included on the list include:

  • Kenny Clark, T, UCLA
  • DeForest Buckner, DE, Oregon
  • Su'a Cravens, LB, USC
  • Myles Jack, LB, UCLA
  • Blake Martinez, LB, Stanford
  • Jared Norris, LB, Utah
  • Scooby Wright III, LB, Arizona
  • Budda Baker, DB, Washington
  • Adoree' Jackson, DB, USC
  • Fabian Moreau, DB, UCLA

Meanwhile, the watch list for the award that goes to the nation's best interior lineman - the Outland Trophy - boasts 13 Pac-12 players, second only to the SEC. A Pac-12 player hasn't won the Outland since 2002, when Washington State's Rien Long took home the honor. Here's the baker's dozen from the league on the watch list:

  • Jake Brendel, C, UCLA
  • Nick Kelly, C, Arizona State
  • Max Tuerk, C, USC
  • Joshua Garrett, OG, Stanford
  • Isaac Seumalo, OG, Oregon State
  • Christian Westerman, OG, Arizona State
  • Joe Dahl, OT, Washington State
  • Tyler Johnstone, OT, Oregon
  • Kyle Murphy, OT, Stanford
  • Freddie Tagaloa, OT, Arizona
  • Kenny Clark, DT, UCLA
  • Eddie Vanderdoes, DT, UCLA
  • Antwaun Woods, DT, USC

July 9 - Lou Groza Award and Ray Guy Award

When the game is on the line, you always want these guys on your side.

Five Pac-12 placekickers are on the 2015 watch list for the Lou Groza Award, which goes annualy to the nation's top kicker. Four players from the conference have won the Groza, with UCLA's Kai Forbath being the most recent in 2009. This year, the Pac-12 kickers represented include:

  • Ka'imi Fairbairn, UCLA
  • Zane Gonzalez, Arizona State
  • Andy Phillips, Utah
  • Aidan Schneider, Oregon
  • Cameron Van Winkle, Washington

Meanwhile, we know in the Pac-12 that #puntersarepeopletoo, especially when one of your own is the defending Ray Guy Award winner. Tom Hackett established himself last season as the nation's premier punter, and he's one of three from the conference on the 2015 watch list:

  • Korey Durkee, Washington
  • Tom Hackett, Utah
  • Drew Riggleman, Arizona

July 8 - John Mackey Award and Rimington Trophy

If there are two things a quarterback cannot do without in the Pac-12, they are an excellent center and a strong, versatile tight end. The watch lists for the award given to the top players at each of those positions was unveiled Wednesday.

Four Pac-12 tight ends appear on the 2015 John Mackey Award watch list, which is given annually to the nation's top player at the position. The Pac-12 last won the award in 2013 when Washington's Austin Seferian-Jenkins earned the honor; he's one of four players from the conference to earn the honor since it began in 2000.

This year, the Pac-12 players on the list include:

  • Jalen Cope-Fitzpatrick, USC
  • Austin Hooper, Stanford
  • Jonny Mundt, Oregon
  • Joshua Perkins, Washington

Meanwhile, eight of the Pac-12's finest centers appear on the lengthy Rimington Trophy watch list. No one from the conference has won the award, but one of these guys could be the first:

  • Nick Kelly, Arizona State
  • Alex Kelley, Colorado
  • Matt Hegarty, Oregon
  • Josh Mitchell, Oregon State
  • Graham Shuler, Stanford
  • Jake Brendel, UCLA
  • Max Tuerk, USC
  • Siaosi Aiono, Utah

July 7 - Maxwell Award and Bednarik Award

In these categories, the Pac-12 is coming in hot; the conference boasts the 2014 champion for both the Maxwell and Bednarik awards.

The Maxwell Award is given annually by the Maxwell Football Club to the college football player ajudged to be the best in the nation each year. Oregon quarterback Marcus Mariota captured the award in 2014 as part of his sweep of several of America's top honors, including the Heisman Trophy. 

In 2015, 13 Pac-12 players are on the preseason Maxwell Award watch list:

  • Mike Bercovici, QB, Arizona State
  • Devontae Booker, RB, Utah
  • D.J. Foster, WR, Arizona State
  • Royce Freeman, RB, Oregon
  • Jared Goff, QB, California
  • Kevin Hogan, QB, Stanford
  • Cody Kessler, QB, USC
  • Christian McCaffrey, RB, Stanford
  • Paul Perkins, RB, UCLA
  • Anu Solomon, QB, Arizona
  • Nelson Spruce, WR, Colorado
  • Nick Wilson, RB, Arizona
  • Storm Woods, RB, Oregon State

The Maxwell Football Club also gives out the Chuck Bednarik Award each year, which is awarded to the nation's defensive player of the year. Arizona's Scooby Wright III is back in 2015 to defend his award. He's joined by 11 other outstanding defensive players from the Pac-12 on the 2015 watch list:

  • Kevin Anderson, LB, Stanford
  • Budda Baker, S, Washington
  • DeForest Buckner, DE, Oregon
  • Lloyd Carrington, CB, Arizona State
  • Kenny Clark, DT, UCLA
  • Su'a Cravens, LB, USC
  • Myles Jack, LB, UCLA
  • Adoree' Jackson, CB, USC
  • Blake Martinez, LB, Stanford
  • Jared Norris, LB,  Utah
  • Will Parks, S, Arizona
  • Scooby Wright III, LB, Arizona

July 6 - Paul Hornung Award

The Hornung Award is given annually by the Louisville Sports Commission to the nation's most versatile player. This will be the sixth time the award is given out and the Pac-12 boasts the 2014 winner in Washington's Shaq Thompson. Stanford's Owen Marecic also won the Hornung in 2010.

This year, eight Pac-12 players are on the Hornung Award preseason watch list:

  • Ishmael Adams, UCLA
  • Myles Jack, UCLA
  • Budda Baker, Washington
  • Trevor Davis, California
  • Adoree' Jackson, USC
  • Byron Marshall, Oregon
  • Charles Nelson, Oregon
  • Christian McCaffrey, Stanford
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