Three Spartans land on Bednarik watch list

Shilique Calhoun, Kurtis Drummond and Trae Waynes give MSU most Big Ten representatives on early list for the award for the nation's top defensive player.

Michigan State is losing some major defensive stars from its stellar 2013 defense, but the 2014 edition should feature plenty of star power – and the Bednarik watch list indicates that.

Defensive end Shilique Calhoun, safety Kurtis Drummond and cornerback Trae Waynes were named to the 76-player list for the award honoring the nation’s top defensive player Monday.

Calhoun also was named to the Paul Hornung award watch list, which honors the most versatile player in college football, after his breakout 2013 season.

Calhoun is coming off winning the Big Ten defensive lineman of the year award and being named the national player of the year by the College Football Performance Awards. He had three touchdowns in the Spartans’ first two games, a total which tied for the FBS lead. He also had 7.5 sacks and 14 tackles for loss.

Drummond had 91 tackles and four interceptions as a junior last season, earning first-team All-Big Ten honors.

In his first year as a starter, Waynes had 50 tackles and three interceptions – all in the final three games of the season – and was an honorable mention All-Big Ten pick.

Michigan (defensive end Frank Clark, linebacker Jake Ryan) and Ohio State (defensive tackle Michael Bennett, defensive end Joey Bosa) each had two players on the Bednarik watch list.

Iowa defensive tackle Carl Davis, Nebraska defensive end Randy Gregory and Penn State cornerback Jordan Lucas were the other Big Ten representatives on the list.

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