SEC has six semifinalists for Bednarik Award

Posted by ESPN.com's Chris Low

The SEC topped all conferences with six players being named to the list of 16 semifinalists for the Chuck Bednarik Award, which is given annually to the top defensive player in college football.

Making the cut were Alabama linebacker Rolando McClain, Alabama nose guard Terrence Cody, Florida linebacker Brandon Spikes, Tennessee safety Eric Berry, South Carolina outside linebacker Eric Norwood and Georgia linebacker Rennie Curran.

To me, one of the most surprising omissions from this list was Florida cornerback Joe Haden, who's been one of the better cornerbacks in the country.

The last SEC player to win the Bednarik Award was Georgia defensive end David Pollack in 2004.

Here's the entire list of the 16 semifinalists:

  • Pat Angerer, University of Iowa, LB, SR

  • Eric Berry, University of Tennessee, DB, JR

  • Navorro Bowman, Penn State University, LB, JR

  • Terrence Cody, University of Alabama, DL, SR

  • Rennie Curran, University of Georgia, LB, JR

  • Jerry Hughes, Texas Christian University, DL, SR

  • Greg Jones, Michigan State University, LB, JR

  • Taylor Mays, University of Southern California, DB, SR

  • Rolando McClain, University of Alabama, LB, JR

  • Gerald McCoy, University of Oklahoma, DL, SR

  • Von Miller, Texas A&M, DL, JR

  • Eric Norwood, University of South Carolina, LB, SR

  • Brian Price, UCLA, DL, JR

  • O'Brien Schofield, University of Wisconsin, DL, SR

  • Brandon Spikes, University of Florida, LB, SR

  • Ndamukong Suh, University of Nebraska, DL, SR