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2011 Husker Watch List Central

For college football nuts, there are only two times of year - September through the National Championship Game and that gray area not included in the previous range. Spring football helps fill the gap a bit, but we are always looking for other bridges. So a tip of the cap to the organizations who give out college football's year-end individual awards for making a list of roughly a third of the nation's previous year starters (or anyone else who made a highlight reel) and calling them watch lists.

Everybody with a site - including us - has been bleeding them out here and there, but for Husker fans I offer the full list. Well, almost, the Unitas Golden Arm list isn't out yet, but screw 'em. There's bar arguments to start and we don't have all summer. And just for the heck of it, let's toss out some odds.

Rimington (Best Center) - Mike Caputo - Odds: 250-1
(It's just an honor to be nominated)

Butkus (Top Linebacker) - Lavonte David - Odds: 10-1
(Along with Crick, our most legitimate shot to bring one of these home)

Outland (Top Lineman Offense or Defense) - Jared Crick - Odds: 5-1
(Crick came out from Suh's shadow last year and showed he could wreak havoc when the focus of blocking schemes - a legit contender)

Lombardi (Top Lineman Offense or Defense) - Jared Crick, Lavonte David, Cameron Meredith - Odds: 5-1, 250-1, 250-1
(Just because "Line" is in their name doesn't make linebackers linemen. The Outland Lite.)

Thorpe (Best DB) - Alfonzo Dennard - Odds: 25-1
(Better chance than you may think - NU's defensive reputation is through the roof nationally and Dennard is the headline CB now)

Nagurski (Top Defensive Player) - Jared Crick, Lavonte David, Alfonzo Dennard - Odds: 12-1, 40-1, 100-1
Bednarik (Top Defensive Player) - same three, same odds, same drill
(It's only fitting that a sport capable for so many years of split national championships has at least four instances of two awards for the same position - QB (Unitas, O'Brien), DEF (Nagurski, Bednarik), Lineman (Outland, Lombardi) and Best Overall (Heisman, Maxwell))

Mackey (Best TE) - Kyler Reed - Odds: 7-1
(I know those odds seem pretty low, but they like to hand this out to TE's who make the highlight reel goin' deep...)

Maxwell (Outstanding Player) - Taylor Martinez - Odds: 40-1
(Should really state Best QB, WR or RB. That's not only who wins it each year, but also the only three positions represented on the watch list. At least defense and lineman crack the top 5 of the Heisman every now and again)

O'Brien (Best QB) - Taylor Martinez - Odds: 17-1
(Martinez could make a splash again but Andrew Luck, Matt Barkley, Kellen Moore and Landry Jones would have to throw 40 interceptions each and have their gang rape of a golden retriever posted on YouTube for one of them not to take this award down)

Heisman (Duh) - Taylor Martinez  - Odds: 40-1
(See above but add LaMichael James and Trent Richardson. Phil Steele actually has Martinez 8th on his Heisman list.)

(Added 7/19/2011):

Walter Camp (Player of the Year #3) - Jared Crick - Odds: 500-1
(No offense to Jared, but only one defensive player winner since 1967, Charles Woodson...and that was as much for kick returns as anything else)