Watch List Watch: Notre Dame OL Jarrett Patterson on preseason Rimington Trophy list
A sign that college football season is almost here has arrived. It’s the annual blitz of preseason watch lists for college football’s top awards.
The watch list spree began in earnest Monday and will continue through the end of next week. ND Insider will track all of the Notre Dame mentions below.
Rimington Trophy: Jarrett Patterson
Notre Dame senior Jarrett Patterson will start the 2021 season in the same way he started the 2020 season: on the preseason Rimington Trophy watch list.
The award given to the top center in college football announced 40 players on its preseason watch list Friday.
Patterson has started 21 games at center for the Irish, but his 2020 season was cut short after eight games with a foot injury. Patterson missed spring practice this year while he was still recovering from the surgery on his left foot.
The Irish considered moving Patterson out to left tackle this year, but he will likely return to center with the emergence of freshman Blake Fisher at left tackle.
No Notre Dame player has won the Rimington Trophy since its inception in 2000.
John Mackey Award: Michael Mayer
Michael Mayer’s unprecedented freshman season at Notre Dame has led to high expectations for the former five-star recruit.
Mayer finished the 2020 season tied for a team high with 42 receptions, which set a program record for receptions by a freshman tight end. Mayer's receptions totaled 450 yards and two touchdowns.
Heading into his sophomore season, Mayer was named Friday as one of 56 players on the preseason John Mackey Award watch list. The honor given to the top tight end in the country was first bestowed in 2000.
In 2012, Tyler Eifert became the only Notre Dame player to win the award.
Good Works Team: Myron Tagovailoa-Amosa
The 2021 Allstate AFCA Good Works Team will recognize players who demonstrate leadership on and off the football field with community service and academic dedication.
On Thursday, 109 players across all divisions of college football were announced as nominees. That list includes Notre Dame defensive lineman Myron Tagovailoa-Amosa.
The Irish graduate student helped organize Notre Dame’s Juneteenth Rally in 2020 and has participated in a number of team activities with the community including Football 101, Uplifting Athletes’ annual bowling event and Shop-with-a-Player event during the winter holiday season.
Tagovailoa-Amosa recorded 17 tackles, six tackles for a loss and 2.5 sacks last season.
Biletnikoff Award: Michael Mayer
The preseason watch list for the Biletnikoff Award included 45 wide receivers when it was released Thursday. But the award that recognizes the most outstanding pass catcher in college football can also be won by a tight end or running back.
That’s how Notre Dame sophomore tight end Michael Mayer also made the list. He was one of five tight ends to receive the preseason nod.
Alabama wide receiver DeVonta Smith won the Biletnikoff Award, which was created in 1994, last season. Wide receiver Golden Tate became the only Notre Dame player to win the award in 2009.
Doak Walker Award: Kyren Williams
Notre Dame running back Kyren Williams was selected as one of 10 semifinalists for the Doak Walker Award last season, so it was basically a given that he’d make the 2021 preseason watch list for the award that honors college football’s top running back.
That officially happened Wednesday with Williams joining 81 other running backs on the watch list.
Williams was named ACC Rookie of the Year as a sophomore last season for accumulating 1,125 yards and 13 touchdowns on 211 carries and 313 yards and one touchdown on 35 catches.
No Notre Dame running back has ever won the Doak Walker Award, which was created in 1990. Alabama running back Najee Harris won the award last season.
Bednarik Award: Kyle Hamilton
Kyle Hamilton was named to his first preseason watch list of the year Monday. It certainly won’t be his last.
Notre Dame’s junior safety was one of 90 players recognized on the Bednarik Award watch list for the 2021 season. The Bednarik Award has identified the best defensive player in college football every year since 1995.
Hamilton, who recorded 63 tackles, seven pass breakups, 4.5 tackles for a loss and one interception as a sophomore, was one of 18 semifinalists last season for the Bednarik Award, which was given to Tulsa linebacker Zaven Collins. Former Irish linebacker Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah was one of the three finalists alongside Collins.
Linebacker Manti Te’o became the only Notre Dame player to win the Bednarik Award following the 2012 season.
Maxwell Award: Kyren Williams
Notre Dame’s offense will enter the 2021 season with a certified No. 1 running back in Williams.
That’s a big reason why he was one of 80 players named Monday to the preseason watch list for the Maxwell Award. The Maxwell Football Club has given the Maxwell Award to the player deemed to be the best overall player in college football since 1937.
Six Notre Dame football players have won the Maxwell Award since its inception: Leon Hart (1949), Johnny Lattner (1952 and 1953), Jim Lynch (1966), Ross Browner (1977), Brady Quinn (2006) and Manti Te’o (2012).
Former Irish quarterback Ian Book was one of 18 semifinalists last season for the Maxwell Award, which went to Alabama wide receiver DeVonta Smith.
Dodd Trophy: Brian Kelly
A spot on the preseason watch list for the Dodd Trophy has become an annual tradition for Notre Dame head coach Brian Kelly.
Since winning the coach of the year award following the 2018 season, Kelly has been named to its preseason watch list every year. The Dodd Trophy is meant to honor the coach who best combines football success with the importance of scholarship, leadership and integrity.
Kelly was one of 17 coaches on this year’s preseason watch list, which was announced July 13, alongside Indiana’s Tom Allen, North Carolina’s Mack Brown, Iowa State’s Matt Campbell, Coastal Carolina’s Jamey Chadwell, Wisconsin's Paul Chryst, Ohio State’s Ryan Day, Iowa’s Kirk Ferentz, Cincinnati’s Luke Fickell, Texas A&M’s Jimbo Fisher, Penn State’s James Franklin, Washington’s Jimmy Lake, Florida’s Dan Mullen, Oklahoma’s Lincoln Riley, Alabama’s Nick Saban, Georgia’s Kirby Smart and Clemson’s Dabo Swinney.
Kelly was one of five finalists last season for the Dodd Trophy, which was won by Northwestern’s Pat Fitzgerald.
The following preseason watch lists did not include a Notre Dame player.
► Davey O’Brien Award: The watch list for the national quarterback award consisted of 30 players including five Notre Dame opponents — Sam Howell (North Carolina), Graham Mertz (Wisconsin), McKenzie Milton (Florida State), Desmond Ridder (Cincinnati) and Kedon Slovis (USC) — and former Notre Dame quarterback Phil Jurkovec (Boston College).
Follow ND Insider Tyler James on Twitter: @TJamesNDI.