Bednarik Award tabs Sheppard as candidate

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Razorback senior defensive tackle Malcolm Sheppard added another watch list to his growing list of accolades on Thursday afternoon as he was named to the Chuck Bednarik Award preseason watch list by the Maxwell Football Club.

The Bednarik award is presented annually to the collegiate defensive player of the year and is named after legendary collegiate and professional football player, Chuck Bednarik. The 2009 presentation of the award is the 15th in the awards history and 55 defensive players were named to the initial watch list.

The honor for Sheppard is his second in a week as he was named to the Outland Trophy watch list on Aug. 11. Arkansas’ rock in the center of the defensive front is now in consideration as one of the nation’s top defensive players and one of the nation’s best interior linemen. Last year Sheppard was Arkansas’ second leading tackler, recording 52 solo take downs and 68 total tackles while leading the Razorback roster in tackles for loss (14.5), sacks (6.5), quarterback hurries (12) and forced fumbles (2). In the national rankings, his 14.5 tackles for loss ranked 25th and was tied for 38th in sacks.

Semifinalists for the Bednarik Award are scheduled to be announced on November 4 and three finalists will be named on November 23. The Bednarik Award winner will be announced on December 10 as a part of the Home Depot ESPNU College Football Awards Show. The presentation of the Bednarik trophy is slated for March 5, 2010.

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