CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – Virginia cornerback Bryce Hall and linebacker Jordan Mack have been named to the preseason Bronko Nagurski Watch List, the Football Writers Association of America (FWAA) announced Tuesday. The FWAA and the Charlotte Touchdown Club award the Nagurski Trophy annually to the nation’s best defensive player.
Hall (Sr., Harrisburg, Pa.) was named a second-team All-American in 2018 by the Walter Camp Foundation and the Football Writers of America after leading the nation with 22 passes broken up. He also tied for the nation’s lead with 24 passes defended. Hall, a first-team All-ACC honoree, was a major factor in 2018 helping the UVA defense finish No. 12 in the nation in team passing efficiency defense (107.62), No. 16 in passing yards allowed (183.0), No. 20 in the nation in team defense (330.5). Hall has also been named to the preseason Bednarik Award, Thorpe Award and Lott IMPACT Trophy Watch Lists.
Mack (Sr., Lithonia, Ga.) started nine games for the Cavaliers in 2018 and missed the other four contests with an injury. Mack made 114 tackles as a sophomore in 2017 after starting all 13 games. In an injury-shortened season in 2018, he finished second on the team with 66 tackles with six tackles for loss and 2.5 sacks. In the nine games Mack appeared, he was a key cog at in the middle helping UVA’s top 25 defense.
Hall and Mack are two of 12 ACC players to make the 92-person watch list.
Players may be added or removed from the watch list during the course of the season. As in previous years, the FWAA will announce a National Defensive Player of the Week each Tuesday this season. If not already on the watch list, each week’s honored player will be added at that time. The FWAA and the Charlotte Touchdown Club will announce five finalists for the 2019 Bronko Nagurski Trophy on Nov. 20.
The Bronko Nagurski Trophy winner will be chosen from those five finalists. The FWAA All-America Committee, after voting input from the association’s full membership, selects a 26-man All-America Team and eventually the Nagurski Trophy finalists. Committee members, by individual ballot, select the winner they regard as the best defensive player in college football.
The Nagurski Trophy is a member of the National College Football Awards Association (NCFAA), which encompasses the most prestigious awards in college football. Visit www.NCFAA.org to learn more.