Texas linebackers Malik Jefferson and Malcolm Roach were named on the Bronko Nagurski Trophy watch list released by the Charlotte Touchdown Club and Football Writers Association of America on Thursday.
The award is presented annually to college football’s top defensive player. Alabama defensive end Jonathan Allen won it in 2016.
Jefferson was also named to the watch list last season, while Roach makes his first appearance after a breakout freshman season. Jefferson, a junior, was the Longhorns’ third-leading tackler in 2016 with 62 total stops, 8.5 tackles for loss and 5.5 sacks. He was a semifinalist for the Butkus Award, given to college football’s top linebacker.
Roach was an honorable mention for the Big 12’s defensive freshman of the year award after making 33 total tackles, 8.0 tackles for loss and 3.0 sacks.
Should Jefferson or Roach win the award, they would become the third Longhorn to do so following Derrick Johnson (2004) and Brian Orakpo (2008).
— Texas Football (@TexasFootball) July 13, 2017
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