The 2006 college football season is winding down, and it's time to start handing out the hardware. Whether it's the Bednarik (for defensive player), Outland (interior lineman), Biletnikoff (wide receiver) or Davey O'Brien (quarterback), we have it covered.
Check out the nominees below, and cast your vote. But give it some thought because your vote will count towards the official tally! That's right. The results of the SportsNation voting will count as one official vote!
To find out the winners, tune in to The Home Depot College Football Awards, (live on ESPN, Thursday, Dec. 7, from 7-9 p.m. ET). Chris Fowler, Lee Corso and Kirk Herbstreit will host the show which will originate from the Atlantic Dance Hall on Disney's Boardwalk at the Walt Disney World Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Florida.
In addition, we'd like your input on which head coach should be named The Home Depot Coach of the Year. Click here to cast your vote.
Voting closes Wednesday, Dec. 6 at 5 p.m. ET
(Outstanding Defensive Player)
The winner of this award will be in fine company -- Paul Posluszny (2005), David Pollack (2004), Teddy Lehman (2003), EJ Henderson (2002), Julius Peppers (2001), Dan Morgan (2000) -- and all three candidates have one thing in common - putting a chill down the spine of offensive players everywhere.
Dan Connor, Penn State: All-around LB had 103 tackles, five sacks and two interceptions.
Paul Posluszny, Penn State: LB's 108 tackles led team.
LaMarr Woodley, Michigan: DE led team in tackles for loss (15.5) and sacks (11).
(Outstanding Wide Receiver)
The Biletnikoff trophy weighs 56 pounds, has won several national awards for design excellence, and is the largest of all the college football position awards. But something tells us these guys can handle it. Previous winners include Mike Hass (2005), Braylon Edwards (2004), Larry Fitzgerald (2003) and Charles Rogers (2002).
Jarett Dillard, Rice: Career leader in single-season (20) and career TD receptions (25).
Calvin Johnson, Georgia Tech: Led team in overall scoring with 13 TD receptions.
Jeff Samardzija, Notre Dame: Brady Quinn's favorite target had 958 yards and 11 TDs.
The most frightening linebacker in football history has a trophy to match; 16 inches high, 35 pounds, and seemingly poised for a hard-nosed tackle. Past winners include Paul Posluszny (2005), Derrick Johnson (2004), Teddy Lehman Sr. (2003), and E.J. Henderson (2002).
Lou Groza Award (Kicker)
The Lou Groza Award is named for NFL Hall-of-Fame kicker Lou "The Toe" Groza, who played 21 seasons with the Cleveland Browns. Groza won four NFL championships with Cleveland and was named NFL Player of the Year in 1954. He is regarded as the first kicker to be truly considered an offensive weapon.
Arthur Carmody, Louisville: Made 90% of his field goals, with a long of 51 yards.
Garrett Hartley, Oklahoma: Only miss was a blocked kick; perfect otherwise (17/18 FG).
John Vaughn, Auburn: 2-for-3 from 50 yards or more, including a long of 55 yards.
Ray Guy Award (Punter)
Candidates for the Ray Guy Award are evaluated on their overall statistics and contribution to their team with emphasis placed on the following categories: net average, percentage of total punts inside the 20, average return yardage and percentage not returned.
Durant Brooks, Georgia Tech: 23 punts of 50 yards or more.
Jeremy Kapinos, Penn State: Only 18 of his 57 punts were returnable.
Daniel Sepulveda, Baylor: Best punting average (44.85 yards) in Baylor history.
Maxwell Award (Outstanding Player)
The Maxwell Award is given to the most outstanding player in college football. The following candidates led their respective teams through their astonishing play on the field and their leadership. The 2005 recipient of the Maxwell Award was Texas quarterback Vince Young.
Ray Rice, Rutgers: RB averaged 139 rushing yards per game with 17 TDs.
Troy Smith, Ohio State: QB completed 67% of his passes and threw 30 TDs.
Brady Quinn, Notre Dame: QB averaged 273 yards per game with 37 total TDs.
Davey O'Brien Award (Quarterback)
The Davey O'Brien Award is named after the All-American football player at Texas Christian University who was named to thirteen All-American teams and became the only college football player to win the Heisman, Maxwell, and Walter Camp trophies in the same year. The 2005 recipient of the Davey O'Brien Award was Texas quarterback Vince Young.
Colt Brennan, Hawaii: Junior QB tossed 51 TDs and completed 71% of his passes.
Troy Smith, Ohio State: Completed 67% of his passes and threw 30 TDs.
Brady Quinn, Notre Dame: Averaged 273 yards per game with 37 cumulative TDs.
Outland Trophy (Interior Lineman)
The following nominees for the Outland Award are all key members of units that gave opponents trouble all year - two on the offensive line, one on defense. The 2005 recipient of the Outland Trophy was Greg Eslinger of Minnesota.
Justin Blalock, Texas: RBs averaged 268.9 yards per game in his three years starting.
Dan Mozes, West Virginia: Undersized OL is a big reason for Steve Slaton's success.
Joe Thomas, Wisconsin: 90% of the time, he's trusted to handle one-on-one blocks.
Jim Thorpe Award (Defensive Back)
The Thorpe Award has been presented since 1986, based on performance on the field, athletic ability and character. Recent winners include Michael Huff of Texas (2005), Carlos Rogers of Auburn (2004), Derrick Strait of Oklahoma (2003), Terence Newman of Kansas State (2002) and Roy Williams of Oklahoma (2001).
Leon Hall, Michigan: CB Leads Big 10 with 18 pass breakups.
Reggie Nelson, Florida: S had five interceptions with one returned for a TD.
Aaron Ross, Texas: CB had five interceptions and one punt returned for a TD.
Doak Walker Award (Running Back)
The Doak Walker Award is the only major collegiate football award that requires all candidates to be in good academic standing and on schedule to graduate within one year of other students of the same classification. It recognizes the nation's premier running back for his accomplishments on the field, achievement in the classroom and citizenship in the community. The 2005 recipient of the Doak Walker Award was Reggie Bush of USC.
Mike Hart, Michigan: Junior RB sixth nationally in rushing with 1,373 yards.
Darren McFadden, Arkansas: 14 TDs and 1,485 yards on the ground.
Steve Slaton, West Virginia: Second in the nation with 1,621 rushing yards.