The Jim Thorpe Award 2016 watch list announced today includes 39 of the nation’s best defensive backs, representing ten conferences and includes the 2015 winner, Desmond King.

The Jim Thorpe Award is one of the most coveted awards in college football. The award was established in 1986 and is named after history’s greatest all-around athlete, Jim Thorpe.  Thorpe excelled not only as a running back, passer, and kicker on the offensive side of the ball; but also stood out as a defensive back.  In addition to his legendary performance on the football field, Thorpe played professional baseball and won Olympic gold medals in the decathlon and pentathlon.

The Jim Thorpe Award watch list is chosen by a screening committee who compiles a list of 30-50 players.  The list is not final, and players who have outstanding seasons are added as the season progresses.  The Thorpe Award Winner is selected from three finalists and will be announced at The Home Depot College Football Awards on Thursday, December 8, 2016 on ESPN. 

The Jim Thorpe Award Banquet will be held on Tuesday, February 7, 2017 in Oklahoma.

The Jim Thorpe Award is a member of the National College Football Awards Association (NCFAA) which encompasses the most prestigious awards in college football. The 22 awards boast over 722 years of tradition-selection excellence. Visit www.NCFAA.org to learn more about our story.

The members of the NCFAA are unveiling their preseason watch lists over a 12-day period this month. Seventeen of the association's 22 awards select a preseason watch list and the NCFAA has spearheaded a coordinated effort to promote each award's preseason candidates. Following is the complete 2016 preseason watch list calendar:

Tues., July 5: Bednarik Award / Maxwell Award

Wed., July 6: Mackey Award / Rimington Trophy

Thurs., July 7: Lou Groza Award / Ray Guy Award

Fri., July 8: Bronko Nagurski Trophy / Outland Trophy

 Mon., July 11: Jim Thorpe Award

Tues., July 12: Butkus Award / Rotary Lombardi Award

Wed., July 13: Biletnikoff Award / Wuerffel Trophy

Thurs., July 14: Davey O’Brien Award / Doak Walker   Award     

Fri., July 15:  Walter Camp Award

2016 Jim Thorpe Award Preseason Watch List

Jamal Adams, LSU, Jr.

Tony Annese, Central Michigan, Sr.

Chidobe Awuzie, Colorado, Sr.

Budda Baker, Washington, Jr.

Bobby Baker, Georgia State, Sr.

Quin Blanding, Virginia, Jr.

Cody Brown, Arkansas State, Sr.

Sean Chandler, Temple, Jr.

Jeremy Cutrer, Middle Tennessee, Sr.

Zach Edwards, Cincinnati, Sr.

Nate Gerry, Nebraska, Sr.

Adoree' Jackson, USC, Jr.

Eddie Jackson, Alabama, Sr.

Derwin James, Florida St., So.

Sidney Jones, Washington, Jr.

Damontae Kazee, San Diego State, Sr.

Desmond King, Iowa, Sr.

Roland Ladipo, Air Force, Sr.

Jourdan Lewis, Michigan , Sr.

William Likely, Maryland, Sr.

Shawun Lurry, Northern Illinois, Jr.

Marcus Maye, Florida, Sr.

Demetrius Monday, Kent State, Jr.

Deatrick Nichols, USF, Jr.

Jeremy Reaves, South Alabama, Jr.

DeJuan Rogers, Toledo, Sr.

Boise Ross, Buffalo, Sr.

Weston Steelhammer, Air Force, Sr.

Jordan Sterns, Oklahoma State, Sr.

Jamar Summers, UConn, Jr.

Cameron Sutton, Tennessee, Sr.

Cordrea Tankersley, Clemson, Sr.

Ahmad Thomas, Oklahoma, Sr.

Jaleel Wadood, UCLA, Jr.

Tre'Davious White, LSU, Sr.

Jordan Whitehead, Pittsburgh, So.

Marcus Williams, Utah, Jr.

Andrew Wingard, Wyoming, So.

Xavier Woods, Louisiana Tech, Sr.


By Conference: AAC (4), ACC (4), BIG TEN (4), BIG 12 (2), C-USA (2), MAC (5), MW (4), PAC 12 (6), SEC (5), Sun Belt (3)

The Jim Thorpe Award is presented to the Best Defensive Back in College Football by the Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame. For more information visit www.oklahomasportshalloffame.org.