The Tigers are seeking an unprecedented third straight Thorpe Award after Patrick Peterson and Morris Claiborne took home the trophy in 2010 and 2011, respectively. LSU and Texas (2005-06) are the only two teams to produce Thorpe Award winners in back-to-back seasons.
Mathieu and Reid tied for the team lead in tackles last season with 76, and both enter the 2012 season with four career interceptions.
A 2011 Heisman Trophy finalist, Mathieu heads into his junior campaign having created a total of 14 turnovers during his career. His 11 forced fumbles rank seventh in NCAA history and are just three shy of the NCAA career record.
One of the nation's top hard-hitting safeties, Reid steps into the 2012 season as one of the leaders on and off the field for the Tigers. He has recorded 108 career tackles, 3½ tackles for a loss, one fumble recovery and one forced fumble to go along with four interceptions.
The Thorpe Award Watch List is chosen by a screening committee who compile a list of 30-40 players. The list is not final, and players who have outstanding seasons are added as the season progresses. The Thorpe Award winner is selected from three finalists and will be announced at the Home Depot College Football Awards on Dec. 6.