39 of the nation’s best college football defensive backs were identified this morning when the Jim Thorpe Award watch list for the upcoming season was released, which included eight athletes who call Florida home.

The Jim Thorpe Award, which has been presented annually since 1986, is presented to the nation’s best defensive back by the Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame. The award is named after Jim Thorpe, who is considered one of the greatest all-around athletes to play the game that including playing at running back, passer and kicker on offense, but as well as at defensive back on defense.

Recent Jim Thorpe Award winners have included former Miami Southridge DB Gerod Holliman (Louisville), former Blanche Ely and current Arizona Cardinal DB Patrick Peterson (LSU) and former Blanche Ely DB Tyrone Carter (Minnesota)


Here are the athletes from Florida that made the watch list.

Position, Name, College, High School

DB Eddie Jackson, Alabama, Boyd Anderson
DB Derwin James, Florida State, Haines City
DB William Likely, Maryland, Glades Central
DB Shawun Lurry, Northern Illinois, Dwyer
DB Marcus Maye, Florida, Holy Trinity
DB Deatrick Nichols, South Florida, Miami Central
DB Jeremy Reaves, South Alabama, Pensacola Catholic
DB Ahmad Thomas, Oklahoma, Miami Central

Award semifinalists will be announced on October 24 with finalists being announced on November 22. The award winner will be announced on December 8 on The Home Depot College Football Awards on ESPN.