USC Football: Adoree’ Jackson, Cameron Smith Named to Nagurski Trophy Watch List


USC football’s Adoree’ Jackson and Cameron Smith were named to the Bronco Nagurksi Trophy watch list as potential candidates to be declared the nation’s top defensive player in 2016.

As watch list season rolls on, Adoree’ Jackson and Cameron Smith saw their names on yet another list projecting them as candidates for one of college football’s biggest defensive awards. This time it was the Bronco Nagurski Trophy.

Jackson and Smith were two of 88 defensive players named to the watch list with Jackson making the cut for the second year in a row.

The junior cornerback earned All-American third team recognition from Phil Steele last year and was named to the All-Pac-12 first team. Though he will continue to make an impact as a three-way player, Jackson is expected to continue his progression as one of the top cornerbacks in the nation in 2016.

SEE ALSO: Adoree’ Jackson misses out on Olympics

Smith impressed at middle linebacker during his freshman season, finishing second in tackles on the team and starring in USC’s upset of highly-ranked Utah with a three interception outing. He was named a freshman All-American despite missing the final four games of the season due to a knee injury.

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Once fully recovered from his injury, Smith is expected to once again marshal the Trojan defense from the middle.

Familiar faces on the list also include Colorado cornerback Chidobe Awuzie; Washington safety Bubba Baker, cornerback Sidney Jones and linebacker Azeem Victor; ASU linebacker Salamo Fiso; Utah defensive end Kylie Fitts, defensive tackle Lowell Lotulelei and safety Marcus Williams; UCLA cornerback Fabian Moreau and defensive tackle Eddie Vanderdoes.

Notable for USC’s season opener against Alabama, the Tide placed five players on the watch list: defensive end Jonathan Allen, linebacker Reuben Foster, cornerback Marlon Humphrey, safety Eddie Jackson and linebacker Tim Williams.

No USC player has ever won the Nagurski Trophy since it first came into existence in 1993. Rey Maualuga came closest to bringing it home in 2008 as a finalist.