The semifinalist lists for the Maxwell Award, Bednarik Award and Joseph V. Paterno Award were released on Monday afternoon, with plenty of Big 12 talent on both.
The Big 12 representatives on the semifinalist list for the first annual Joseph V. Paterno Award, given to college football's coach of the year are:
Gary Pinkel, Missouri
Bob Stoops, Oklahoma
And for the Maxwell Award, as college football's best offensive player:
Justin Blackmon, WR, Oklahoma State
Ryan Broyles, WR, Oklahoma
Robert Griffin III, QB, Baylor
Kendall Hunter, RB, Oklahoma State
Taylor Martinez, QB, Nebraska
That's a pretty impressive haul. The Big 12 has five players on the 16-man list. I wouldn't expect any of those guys to beat out other players on the list like Cam Newton or LaMichael James, but you can't deny that despite what we thought in the preseason, there's a lot of elite offensive talent within the conference. Most of us probably figured before the season that only a couple of those guys could make this list in November.
And what about the defense? Here's who's on the list for the Bednarik Award as the nation's best defensive player:
Sam Acho, DL, Texas
Prince Amukamara, CB, Nebraska