By: Jeff Shearer
AUBURN, Alabama – Auburn stands out Bo Nix and Bigsby Reservoir were named to the Maxwell Award Watchlist as linebacker Zakoby mcclain earned a spot on the Chuck Bednarik Award Watchlist.
Maxwell Football Club on Monday announced its watchlists for the 85th Maxwell Prize awarded annually to outstanding college football player, and for the 27e Annual Chuck Bednarik Award presented annually to outstanding college football defensive player.
Nix, the SEC freshman of the year in 2019 and one of Auburn’s sophomore team captains in 2020, totaled 28 touchdowns and 14 touchdowns in 24 games over the course of his first two seasons.
Bigsby, the first Auburn football player to average 6 yards per carry since James Bostic in 1993, won the SEC Co-Freshman of the Year honors in 2020, rushing for 834 yards, the second tallest for a Auburn freshman in program history.
McClain led the nation with 113 tackles last season, averaging 10.3 saves per game, who placed third in the SEC and 19e nationally.
Both awards are proudly sponsored by Mammoth Tech and the Athletes’ Corner, who are executive partners of Maxwell Football Club.
The Maxwell Award has been presented to the College Player of the Year since 1937 and is named in honor of Robert “Tiny” Maxwell, who was a former Swarthmore College star and a famous sports writer and football official.
The Maxwell Award Watchlist will once again incorporate a wide range of Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) programs and conferences from coast to coast.
The roster includes six returning 2020 semi-finalists, including Desmond Ridder (Cincinnati), Grayson McCall (Coast Carolina), Breece Hall (Iowa State), D’Eriq King (Miami), Sam Howell (North Carolina) ) and Dillon Gabriel (UCF). The full roster consists of 80 players, with 14 schools having two players represented.
The Chuck Bednarik Award has been presented to the varsity defensive player of the year since 1995 and is named in honor of the former star player of the University of Pennsylvania and the Philadelphia Eagles. Bednarik is a member of the College Football Hall of Fame Class of 69 and the NFL Hall of Fame Class of 67.
The Bednarik Award Watchlist is made up of 90 applicants. The roster includes two returning 2020 semi-finalists, Myjai Sanders (Cincinnati) and Kyle Hamilton (Notre Dame). There are 11 schools that have two applicants on the Bednarik Watchlist.
Maxwell Football Club has once again partnered with Pro Football Focus (PFF), XOS ThunderCloud and Phil Steele Publications as partners of the selection committee. PFF provides detailed metrics and performance-based ratings to selection committee staff, and several PFF senior analysts are members of our selection committee. Phil Steele’s College Football Preview is widely recognized as the most comprehensive preseason magazine. XOS ThunderCloud provides the Maxwell Club selection committee with access to play footage from all FBS colleges.
Jeff shearer is a senior writer at AuburnTigers.com. Follow him on Twitter: @jeff_shearer