Aug. 28, 2002
Two national college watch lists came out today and two Gamecocks were among those listed – spur Rashad Faison is the Jim Thorpe Award Watch List and quarterback Corey Jenkins is on the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award List. Earlier in the month Andrew Pinnock was named to the watch list for the Doak Walker Award.
“Being nominated for the Thorpe Award is big-time. It’s a big time compliment to myself and the defense,” said Faison, a native of Wauchula, Fla. “I learned a lot last year from the seniors, especially guys like Sheldon Brown (a Thorpe Award semi-finalist in 2001 and second round draft pick of the Philadelphia Eagles). It’s an honor, but you have to go out and play the game now. It’s also nice to see the awards that Andrew and Corey are nominated for. People are starting to recognize the Gamecocks as players nationally.”
Faison led the team in tackles with 104 total. He also had two sacks, one interception and recovered one fumble. Faison is also on the watch list for the Bronko Nagurski Award – presented annually to the nation’s top defensive player.
Jenkins was 11 of 24 for 194 yards last year as the back-up to Outback Bowl MVP Phil Petty, who was also named to the watch list in 2001.
“This is an honor,” said Jenkins, a Columbia native will start his first game against New Mexico State on Saturday.
The Thorpe Award is presented annually to the nation’s top defensive back while the Unitas Award is presented to the nation’s top senior quarterback. The Thorpe Award will announce 10 semi-finalists on November 10, cut it down to three semi-finalists in late Novemeber with the winner announced at the ESPN College Awards Show.
The Unitas Award committee will announce five finalists on Oct. 23 with the award being announced on Dec. 13 in Louisville.