SHSU football player on Buchanan award ballot, first time in seven years
Published: Tuesday, July 24, 2012
Updated: Tuesday, July 24, 2012 00:07
The Sam Houston State University football team has a Buck Buchanan Award candidate, for the first time in seven years.
Senior safety Darnell Taylor is one of 20 being recognized by The Sports Network as a candidate for the nation’s top defensive player award.
“It’s a dream come true, and an honor to be recognized as one of the best defensive players in the fcs,” Taylor said. “It’s an award that all defensive players strive for and I’m one step closer to it. I’m blessed to have other great players surrounding me, making my job on the field a lot easier. I honestly believe we have other guys on our defense that are just as good as me if not better so it’s truly an honor and I’m fired up about the season.”
Taylor has received many awards this season already such as: Sports Network first team defense, Southland Conference “Defensive player of the year,” first team All-Southland selection, and preseason SLC first-team selection.
Taylor had 128 tackles in the 2011 season which is the highest in a single season since 1988. He also posted double digit tackles in eight games including season best of 12 in the McNeese victory.
According to gobearkats.com, Taylor joins a list of 13 other newcomers to the watch list, including a pair of Southland Conference defenders, Malcolm Bronson of McNeese State and Willie Jefferson of Stephen F. Austin. The remaining newcomers to the watch list are defensive tackle Zach Minter of Montana State; defensive ends, Joseph LeBeau of Jackson State and Blake Oliaro of San Diego.
This season’s winner will join previous winners including Dexter Coakley, Jared Allen, Rashean Mathis and Kroy Biermann. Coakley is the only Buchanan recipient that won twice, once in 1995 and again in 1996.
The Buchanan Award watch list can undergo revision during the 2012 season. About 175 sports information and media relations directors, broadcasters writers and other dignitaries will look over the ballot after the regular season on Nov. 19. The top three vote-getters will be invited to The Sports Network FCS Awards Presentation.