Kansas football: Several Jayhawks named to preseason watch lists

University of Kansas safety Kenny Logan Jr. speaks in an interview with ESPN during the first day of Big 12 Media Days in AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas, July 12, 2023.
University of Kansas safety Kenny Logan Jr. speaks in an interview with ESPN during the first day of Big 12 Media Days in AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas, July 12, 2023. /

Several Kansas football standouts were listed on preseason watch lists. Find out which awards they are in contention for.

Lance Leipold has turned the Kansas Jayhawks football program upside down since he was hired as head coach by Athletic Director Travis Goff in 2021. After a mediocre introductory season at 2-10, Jalon Daniels and KU took college football by storm when they started the year off 5-0 and hosted College GameDay for the first time.

Despite losing in the 2022 Liberty Bowl, Kansas football is eager to improve on its performance last season. The Jayhawks had one of the worst defenses in the FBS, so it is paramount that they can get stops. It all starts with the players, and several KU standouts have been listed on preseason watch lists.

Kenny Logan Jr. was recognized on Paul Hornung Award Watch List, which is annually awarded to the most versatile player in college football. Logan recorded 106 tackles, two interceptions, and five passes defended in his senior year. He elected to utilize his final season of eligibility, making him one of the most highly touted Jayhawks on the roster.

Cobee Bryant represented Kansas on the Bronko Nagurski Trophy Watch List, which is given out to the best defensive player in college football. In 2022, he recorded 38 tackles, 12 passes defended, and three interceptions — one of which was a game-sealing pick-six versus West Virginia.

On the offensive end, two Jayhawks received recognition on the Maxwell Award Watch List. Jalon Daniels and Devin Neal, the two most electric players on the team, were one of 85 players to be nominated. The quarterback from California is also on the Wuerffel Trophy Watch List, which is the NCAA’s premier award for community service.

Mike Novitsky earned a selection to the Rimington Trophy Watch List for the fourth consecutive season. It is annually presented to the top center in college football. Novitsky also garnered Preseason All-Big 12 First Team honors and is widely recognized as one of the best at his position.

READ: More KU football stadium details coming this month

Another offensive player recognized is tight end, Mason Fairchild. The John Mackey Award Watch List acknowledged him as one of the 48 best tight ends in FBS. The incoming senior caught 35 passes for 443 yards and recorded six touchdowns in 2022.

Transfer kicker Seth Keller moved from Texas State to Kansas football this offseason. He was named to the Lou Groza Award Watch List after three outstanding seasons. Keller is 92-for-93 on extra points in his career and 37-for-43 on field goals. His 86% accuracy rate is good for the second-best among all returning FBS kickers.

Nominees for the Biletnikoff Award, Davey O’Brien Award, Doak Walker Award Butkus Award, Paycom Jim Thorpe Award, Walter Camp Award, and Bednarik Award watch lists will be announced this upcoming week.

Next. Forever a Jayhawk: Part 3. dark

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