AUBURN, Ala. Gabe Wright was a popular man on Thursday.
The Auburn defensive tackle was named to two different preseason watch lists, one for the Outland Trophy and another for the Bronko Nagurski Trophy. He was joined on the Outland watch list by Auburn teammates Alex Kozan and Reese Dismukes, making Auburn one of six schools to have three players selected.
The Nagurski is given to the nation's defensive player of the year while the Outland goes to college football's top lineman. Pittsburgh's Aaron Donald captured both awards last year.
Wright, a Columbus native and Carver alum, is expected to be one of the top performers for the Tigers' defense in 2014. Last year, he was tops on the team among defensive linemen in tackles (31) to go along with three sacks.
Dismukes, named to the Rimington Trophy watch list earlier this week, is back this fall for his fourth year as Auburn's starting center. After redshirting in 2012, Kozan had an outstanding debut campaign last year, starting all 14 games at left guard for the SEC champions.
The Football Writers Assocation of America and the Charlotte Touchdown Club will announce five finalists for the Nagurski Trophy on Nov. 20. The winner will be selected from those five finalists who are part of the 2014 FWAA All-America Team. The official presentation of the trophy will come on Dec. 8 during the annual Bronko Nagurski Trophy Banquet at the Westin Hotel in Charlotte, N.C.
The Outland Trophy winner is chosen from three finalists who are part of the FWAA All-America Team. The list will be cut down to six or seven semifinalists on Nov. 20. Four days later, the trophy's three finalists will be named by the FWAA. The winner of the Outland Trophy, named after the late John Outland, an All-America lineman at Penn, will be revealed on ESPN during The Home Depot College Football Awards on Dec. 11.
The presentation of the trophy will come at a banquet on Jan. 15, 2015, in Omaha, Neb.