LSU senior safety Craig Loston and junior defensive tackle Anthony Johnson are candidates for the Bronko Nagurski Trophy, and Johnson and junior tackle La’el Collins are up for the Outland Trophy as two more preseason watch lists were unveiled Thursday by the Football Writers Association of America.
The Nagurski Trophy goes to college football’s defensive player of the year. The Outland Trophy is presented to the nation’s top interior lineman.
Loston was a second-team All-Southeastern Conference recipient as a junior after ranking fifth on the team in tackles with 55 and second in interceptions with three. He is one of three players in school history to return an interception 100 yards for a touchdown; he joined the list in the fourth quarter of a 37-17 win over Mississippi State.
Johnson anchors a defensive line that lost several players to the NFL draft. The junior has 42 tackles, 13 tackles for loss and four sacks in two seasons.
Collins, a guard his first two years, makes the move to tackle this season. Last year, the honorable mention All-SEC selection started all 13 games.
The SEC led the way with 16 of the 81 players on the Nagurski watch list, including 2013 finalist Jadeveon Clowney of South Carolina. It’s the same with the Outland; SEC teams landed 16 of 75 spots.