Harris, Chancellor named to Thorpe Watch List
Award goes to nation
July 8, 2008

OKLAHOMA CITY - The 2008 Jim Thorpe Award preseason "watch list" announced today includes 40 of the nation's best defensive backs as the leading candidates for this year's trophy. Two of those players - Victor Harris and Kam Chancellor - will be roaming the defensive backfield for the Hokies this season.

The Thorpe Award is one of college football's most sought after and prestigious awards. It is named after history's greatest all-around athlete, a man who excelled as a running back, passer and kicker on offense, but also was an awesome defensive back. Recognized in the Pro Football Hall of Fame simply as "The Legend", Thorpe also played professional baseball and won Olympic gold medals in the decathlon and pentathlon.

The Jim Thorpe Award "watch list" is determined by analysis of the pre-season All-American teams listed in at least six pre-season college football annual magazines. Four points are awarded for First Team, three points for second team, two points for third and one point for fourth teams and honorable mentions. This procedure determines approximately 40 players on the pre-season watch list. This list is not final and players who have outstanding seasons are added as the season progresses.

A "Screening Committee" of Jim Thorpe Association members follows these players throughout the season, watching games and researching information sources to grade Thorpe Award candidates on the basis of performance on the field, athletic ability and character. The committee meets on the first Monday in November to narrow the field to 10 or 12 semi-finalists.

The committee meets again on the Monday before Thanksgiving to select the three finalists. The names of these finalists are submitted to a national panel of about 50 sports writers, sportscasters, coaches and former players who vote to determine the winner. The three finalists are invited to the ESPN College Football Awards Show, and the winner is announced during the show.

Formal presentation of the Jim Thorpe Award takes place at ceremonies in Oklahoma City on the first Tuesday in February following the national signing date for college football recruits.

Asher Allen - Jr - Georgia
Nate Allen - Jr - South Florida
Antonio Baker - Jr - Louisiana Tech
Eric Berry - So - Tennessee
David Bruton - Sr - N. Dakota
Joe Burnett - Sr - Univ. Central Florida
Jairus Byrd - Jr  - Oregon
Chris Chancellor - Jr - Clemson
Kam Chancellor - Jr - Virginia Tech
Barry Church - Jr - Toledo
Patrick Chung - Sr - Oregon
Emanuel Cook - Jr - South Carolina
Vontae Davis - Jr - Illinois
Kevin Ellison - Sr - USC
Londen Fryar - Sr - W. Michigan
Courtney Greene - Sr. - Rutgers
Michael Hamlin - Sr. - Clemson  
Nic Harris - Sr. - Oklahoma
Victor Harris - Sr - Virginia Tech
Stephen Hodge - Sr - TCU
Brandon Hughes - Sr - Oregon State
Malcolm Jenkins - Sr. - Ohio State
Rashad Johnson - Sr - Alabama
Jordan Lake - Jr - Baylor
Trevard Lindley - Jr - Kentucky
Taylor Mays  - Jr - USC  
D J Moore - Jr - Vanderbilt
Mike Mickens - Sr - Cincinnati       
William Moore - Sr - Missouri
Captain Munnerlyn - Jr - South Carolina
Troy Nolan - Sr - Arizona State
Derek Pegues - Jr. - Mississippi State       
Tavious Polo - So - Florida Atlantic
Myron Rolle -  Jr - Florida State
Corey Small - Sr - Florida Atlantic
Alphonso Smith - Sr - Wake Forest
DeAngelo Smith - Sr - Cincinnati
Walter Thurmond - Jr - Oregon
Chip Vaughn - Sr - Wake Forest
DeAndre Wright - Sr - New Mexico