Aug. 11, 2009
DALLAS — Baylor senior center J.D. Walton was among 40 student-athletes named to the initial watch list for the 2009 Outland Trophy, the Football Writers Association of America announced Tuesday. The Outland Trophy is awarded annually to the nation’s top interior lineman.
Walton, a member of last year’s Outland Trophy watch list, is one of three returning starters on Baylor’s offensive line. He has started every game of his career, a 24-game streak since transferring to Baylor from Arizona State in 2006. Walton earned honorable mention All-Big 12 Conference honors from The Associated Press after anchoring a Bears’ line that generated 2,349 rushing yards, the most by a Baylor squad since 1981, and 29 rushing touchdowns, one shy of the school record.
A product of Allen [Texas] High School, Walton is one of only eight centers on the 40-man list, joining Chris Fischer (Louisiana-Lafayette), Chris Hall (Texas), Josh McNeil (Tennessee), Kristofer O’Dowd (Southern California), Maurkice Pouncey (Florida), Matt Tennant (Boston College) and Stefen Wisniewski (Penn State). Walton is one of nine Big 12 student-athletes on the Outland Trophy watch list; only the Southeastern Conference (10) had more on the list than the Big 12.
Walton also is a Rimington Trophy candidate (top center), and he earned preseason All-Big 12 honors from Athlon and Phil Steele’s.
The Outland Trophy is the third-oldest award in major college football and has been presented annually since 1946. The winner will be announced Dec. 10 as part of the 2009 Home Depot ESPNU College Football Awards Show in Lake Buena Vista, Fla.