Dutchtown grad Will Anderson Jr. was announced Tuesday as one of four national finalists for the Chuck Bednarik Award, presented to the College Defensive Player of the Year.
The Alabama Crimson Tide sophomore is joined on the list by Georgia’s Jordan Davis, Notre Dame’s Kyle Hamilton and Oregon’s Kayvon Thibodeaux. The finalists were named by the National College Football Awards Association.
The award winners will be announced Dec. 9 during The Home Depot College Football Awards on ESPN.
Anderson enters the weekend as the national leader in tackles for loss with 27 1/2 (a total of minus-113 yards), which is the second-most by a defender in school history. He ranks second nationally with 13 1/2 sacks (minus-79 yards), third-best in school history behind Derrick Thomas, who holds the No. 1 and No. 2 spots. He has 79 tackles (second on the team), eight quarterback hurries and two pass breakups.
He has been SEC Defensive Player of the Week four times this season, as well as Bednarik Award Defensive Player of the Week on three occasions. He was previously named a finalist for the Bronko Nagurski Trophy, given to the top defensive player in the country as selected by the Football Writers Association of America.
The 6-foot-4, 243-pounder was a freshman All-American last season when he had 52 tackles (10 1/2 for losses), seven sacks and eight quarterback hurries.