Peterson was left off the list last season and in the opinion of at least this reporter that was a bad decision. Peterson has impressed opposing Big 12 coaches with his coverage skills going back to his sophomore season.
One of the anchors and leaders of the OSU defense, Peterson led the team with 13 passes defended (11 pass breakups and two interceptions) last season.
The Wagoner, Oklahoma native picked off a pass late in the Cactus Bowl to seal OSU's win over Washington, and also recorded an interception and broke up three passes as part of the Cowboys' win over Texas Tech. He recorded a career-high 11 tackles in the Cowboys' game at Baylor.
His best performance came against West Virginia, when he drew the assignment of covering the nation's leading receiver, Kevin White, who entered the game with 145.7 receiving yards per game. Peterson essentially shut down the Mountaineer standout by limiting him to three catches for 27 yards.
The Thorpe Award winner will be selected from three finalists and will be announced at The Home Depot College Football Awards Show on Dec. 10 on ESPN. The Jim Thorpe Award Banquet will be held Feb. 2 in Oklahoma City.