Florida’s Vernon Hargreaves III highlights the 39 players named to the 2014 Jim Thorpe Award watch list.
The trophy is awarded to the nation’s best defensive back by the Jim Thorpe Association.
As a freshman last year, Hargreaves III was named a Third Team All-American by the Associated Press and was voted the National Defensive Freshman of the Year by College Football News. He had 38 tackles and three interceptions over the course of the season and was one of the most impressive freshmen in college football.
FSU and UCF each have to players named to the watch list.
P.J. Williams and Jalen Ramsey are the FSU representatives while Jacoby Glenn and Clayton Geathers are named from UCF.
Last year, Williams tallied 35 tackles while also hauling in three interceptions, including one in the BCS title game against Auburn, in which he was named defensive MVP of the game. He led the defense in pass break-ups (7) and passes defended (10) during the season.
As a freshman, Ramsey had 49 tackles and added one interception and a sack. He was named to the College Football News Freshman All-America First Team while starting all 14 games for the Seminoles.
Glenn, who was also a freshman, made 52 tackles and added two picks. He also had two sacks and was named to the FWAA Freshman All-America Team.
Geathers had a big season for the Knights as he recorded 100 tackles, had two interceptions and 4.5 sacks as a redshirt senior. His play didn’t go unnoticed as he was named to the All-American Athletic Conference Second Team.
Last seasons winner of the Jim Thorpe Award was Darqueze Denard of Michigan State.