Photo: Kaiir Elam; Credit: University of Florida athletic association
Another day, another award watch list for Florida Gators cornerback Kaiir Elam.
Elam, a rising junior, was named to the Bronko Nagurski Trophy Watch List on Tuesday, which is awarded to the nation's top defensive player as determined by the Football Writers Association of America.
The 6-foot-2, 193-pound cornerback emerged as a starter for Florida during his true freshman season and has yet to look back, developing into one of the nation's top defensive backs as a whole.
Starting 12 games for the Gators in 2020, Elam accumulated 39 tackles, two interceptions and five pass breakups. Elam's 42.6 completion percentage allowed in coverage (per Pro Football Focus) ranked 15th-best in college football in 2020, among cornerbacks targeted 30+ times.
The SEC leads all conferences with 20 defenders on the watch list. A total of 90 standouts from across the nation - including 29 linebackers, 22 defensive backs, 22 defensive ends, and 17 defensive tackles - were selected.
The award winner will be chosen from five finalists on a 26-man All-American team, voted upon by FWAA All-America Committee, and honored at the Bronko Nagurski Awards Banquet presented by LendingTree on Dec. 6 at the Charlotte Convention Center.
This is the third national award list that Elam has been placed on this preseason, along with Chuck Bednarik Award (best defensive player) and the Jim Thorpe Award (best defensive back). He was also named a Second-Team Preseason All-American by the Walter Camp Foundation in June.
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