Thundering Herd senior Vinny Curry has been named to the Bronko Nagurski Award watch list in an announcement by the Football Writers Associate of America and the Charlotte Touchdown Club on Friday.
Curry, who was named to the Bednarik Award watch list earlier this week, led Conference USA with 12 sacks last season. He also garnered 18 tackles for a loss, second in C-USA and tops on the Thundering Herd. He was a First Team All-Conference USA selection in 2010.
One of 87 players on the list most likely will receive the Bronko Nagurski Trophy that is awarded annually to the nation’s best defensive player by the Football Writers Association of America and the Charlotte Touchdown Club. Every NCAA Division I Bowl Subdivision conference and Notre Dame are represented on the list that is pretty evenly divided among linemen, linebackers and defensive backs.
Players may be added or deleted from the Bronko Nagurski Watch List during the season. For the 11th straight season, the FWAA will choose a National Defensive Player of the Week. If that player is not on the Watch List, he automatically will be added. The FWAA and the Charlotte Touchdown Club will announce five finalists for the Bronko Nagurski Trophy on Nov. 17.
The Bronko Nagurski Trophy winner is chosen from five finalists who are part of the FWAA All-America Team. The FWAA All-America Committee, after voting input from the entire membership, selects the 25-man team and eventually the Bronko Nagurski finalists. Committee members, then by individual ballot, select the winner, the best defensive player in America.
The annual Bronko Nagurski Trophy Banquet will be on Dec. 12 at the Westin Hotel in Charlotte, N.C. Besides the 2011 winner being announced, the banquet will also celebrate the recipient of the Bronko Nagurski Legends Award presented by Florida East Coast Railway. Florida’s Jack Youngblood, an end from the FWAA’s 1970 All-American team, will be honored. Georgia head coach Mark Richt will be the keynote speaker at the banquet.
In 2004, former Thundering Herd player Johnathan Goddard was a finalist for the award. Goddard put forth one of the top seasons for a defensive player in program and Mid-American Conference history, leading the nation in sacks (16.0) and tackles for loss (28.0).
For his efforts, he was named a FBWAA All-American. Goddard was drafted by the Detroit Lions in the sixth round of the 2005 NFL Draft. He also played for the Indianapolis Colts. Goddard passed away in a motorcycle accident in 2008.
The Football Writers Association of America, a non-profit organization founded in 1941, consists of more than 1,100 men and women who cover college football for a living. The membership includes journalists, broadcasters and publicists, as well as key executives in all the areas that involve the game. The FWAA works to govern areas that include gameday operations, major awards and its annual All-America team.
The Charlotte Touchdown Club is a non-profit organization founded in 1990 for the purpose of promoting high school, collegiate, and professional football in the Charlotte, N.C. region. The club’s activities and services focus community attention on the outstanding citizenship, scholarship, sportsmanship, and leadership of area athletes and coaches. The official website of the Charlotte Touchdown Club is www.touchdownclub.com<http://www.touchdownclub.com>.