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College football awards: Minkah Fitzpatrick named a Jim Thorpe Award finalist

Fitzpatrick, who’s up for DPOY honors, also was named a finalist for the Thorpe Award.

Alabama v Mississippi State Photo by Butch Dill/Getty Images

Not only is Minkah Fitzpatrick a Bednarik Award finalist, but the Alabama Crimson Tide star is also a Jim Thorpe Award finalist. Fitzpatrick is among three players who are vying for the honor of “Nation’s Best Defensive Back.”

The announcement of Minkah’s candidacy was made on Monday, as he, along with Texas Longhorns junior DeShon Elliott and Iowa Hawkeyes junior Josh Jackson will be contending for the award.

Fitzpatrick has inarguably been one of the best DB’s in the country. He has 44 total tackles, 5.5 TFL, 1.5 sacks, one INT, five PD and a forced fumble in 2017.

If he were to win, Minkah would be the first SEC player since Mississippi St. Bulldogs star Johnthan Banks to win the Thorpe Award. Eric Berry, Patrick Peterson and Morris Claiborne are some of the other SEC stars to win the award in recent years, and Carlos Rogers of course took home the trophy back in 2004.

Also, if Fitzpatrick won, he would break a long drought of non-Alabama DBs to win the award. The last time someone on the Tide won the Thorpe Award, it was 1993, when Antonio Langham won the honor.