July 7, 2014
PHILADELPHIA - Baylor senior Bryce Hager and junior Shawn Oakman have been named to the 77-man watch list for the 20th annual Bednarik Award, The Maxwell Football Club announced Monday. The Bednarik Award has been presented to the College Defensive Player of the Year since 1995.
Hager, a middle linebacker, is a two-time All-Big 12 honoree with 35 career games played and 19 career starts. In 2013, he started nine games before suffering a season-ending injury. The Austin, Texas, product still managed 71 tackles (46 solo, 2.5 for loss), one sack, 10 hurries, three breakups, one fumble recovery and one return TD. He led the Big 12 in tackles in 2012 with 9.5 per game.
Last season, Hager became the first Baylor player to be on the Bednarik Award watch list since Joe Pawelek received the distinction in 2009.
Oakman, a defensive end, earned All-Big 12 accolades last season while serving as a reserve in all 13 games. He totaled 33 tackles (21 solo), 12.5 tackles-for-loss of 32 yards, two sacks (-10 yards), two QB hurries, two forced fumbles, one fumble recovery and one blocked kick on the season. The former Penn State transfer is listed as a starter for 2014.
The BU duo is part of 14 athletes from the Big 12 Conference recognized on the award's watch list.
The award is named for Chuck Bednarik, a former standout at Penn and with the Philadelphia Eagles. He 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.
Semifinalists for the Bednarik Award will be announced Nov. 3, while three finalists will be unveiled Nov. 24. The winners of the 2014 Bednarik Award will be announced as part of the Home Depot College Football Awards Show held on Dec. 11. The formal presentations of the award will be made at the Maxwell Football Club Awards Gala hosted by Revel Casino Hotel Atlantic City on March 6, 2015.
The watch list candidates have been chosen by the Maxwell Football Club's selection committee, which analyzes both past performance and future potential. The Club reserves the right to make additions and deletions to these lists as the 2014 season unfolds. All members of the Maxwell Football Club, NCAA sports information directors, FBS head coaches and selected national media are eligible to vote for the awards.
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