PHILADELPHIA – Three
LSU football players – defensive tackle Anthony Johnson, linebacker Lamin
Barrow and safety Craig Loston – were recognized on the watch list for the
Bednarik Award, which is presented annually to college football's National
Defensive Player of the Year, the Maxwell Football Club announced on Monday.
Both LSU and Alabama lead the Southeastern Conference with three players on the
list. Only six teams nationally have at least three players on the list. LSU is
the only school in SEC history to claim multiple Bednarik Awards when Patrick
Peterson (2010) and Tyrann Mathieu (2011) won it in back-to-back years.
Johnson, a junior from New Orleans, serves as the Tigers' veteran defensive
lineman with 27 games played to his credit. In two seasons, he has recorded 42
tackles, 13 tackles for loss and four sacks. In a reserve role last season, he
finished third on the team with 10 tackles for loss.
Barrow, a native of Marrero, La., is LSU's top returning tackler after racking
up 104 total tackles as a junior, which ranked second on the squad. He added
7.5 tackles for loss, five quarterback hurries and five pass breakups. He will
assume the leadership role on the defensive side of the ball as a senior after
the departure of Kevin Minter.
Loston, a senior from Houston, has made several pre-season All-America teams as
one of the nation's elite safety prospects. In 35 career games, Loston has
notched 91 tackles and six takeaways (four interceptions, one forced fumble,
one fumble recovery).
Loston was a second-team All-SEC recipient as a junior after ranking fifth on
the team in tackles with 55 and second in interceptions with three. He is one
of only three players in school history to return an interception 100 yards for
a touchdown as he joined the list in the fourth quarter of a 37-17 blowout win
over Mississippi State.
The Bednarik Award has been presented to the College Defensive Player of the
Year since 1995. Semifinalists for the Bednarik Award will be announced Oct.
29, while the three finalists will be unveiled Nov. 18. The winner of the 2013
Bednarik Award will be announced as part of the Home Depot ESPNU College
Football Awards Show during the first week of December.