May 7, 2008
Baylor junior center J.D. Walton (Allen, Texas) was one of 42 players recently named to the Rimington Trophy's 2008 Spring Watch List released by the award's selection committee. Included in the Watch List are seven Big 12 Conference student-athletes. The award annually recognizes the nation's top center.
One of three Baylor offensive linemen to start every 2007 game, joining tackle Dan Gay and guard James Barnard, Walton was a key cog along a Bears' line which yielded just 21 sacks (on a school-record 561 pass attempts), the program's fewest since 1995. He shared the team's Best Offensive Lineman Award with tackle Jason Smith.
Walton saw action on 65 or more plays in 10 games with a high of 97 at Buffalo. For the season, he played 911 snaps, most by a Baylor offensive performer in 2007, and second-most overall behind free safety Jordan Lake's 974.
In addition to Walton, other Big 12 players named to the list include Colorado's Daniel Sanders, Kansas' Ryan Cantrell, Kansas State's Jordan Bedore, Oklahoma's Jon Cooper, Oklahoma State's Andrew Lewis and Texas' Chris Hall.
Included on the 2008 Spring Watch List are two finalists from the 2007 Watch List, as well as the award's 2007 winner in Arkansas' Jonathan Luigs. The 2008 winner will be honored at the Rimington Trophy Presentation banquet at the Rococo Theatre in Lincoln, Neb., on January 17, 2009.