ATHENS, Ga. — Members from Georgia’s top-ranked football team were named finalists and semifinalists for a variety of national awards on Tuesday, according to an ESPN announcement.


The finalists have now been named for the National College Football Awards Association (NCFAA) honors presented at The Home Deport College Football Awards.  This year’s awards show will air on ESPN live on Dec. 9 at 7 p.m. ET.  ESPN’s Rece Davis will host the two-hour special, joined by analysts Dusty Dvoracek and Desmond Howard, with reporter Jen Lada.


Here are the Bulldog finalists/semifinalists announced on Tuesday:


  • Junior linebacker Nakobe Dean earned a spot as one of four finalists for the Chuck Bednarik Award, which is given to the college defensive player of the year.
  • Dean was also included as one of three finalists for the Wuerffel Trophy, which is considered one of college football’s premier awards for community service.
  • Senior defensive lineman Jordan Davis was tabbed as one of three finalists for the Outland Trophy, which is given to the nation’s most outstanding interior lineman.
  • The Bulldog offensive line was included as one of 13 units to be named a semifinalist for the Joe Moore Award, which is given to the country’s top offensive line unit.  Georgia is one of three SEC schools remaining.  Award finalists are scheduled to be named on Dec. 7.


Dean, a native of Horn Lake, Miss., is the team’s second-leading tackler with 50 stops, including a team-best seven tackles for loss and 4.5 sacks.  In addition to a forced fumble and three pass break-ups, Dean has two interceptions this season, including his 50-yard pick-six versus Florida.


Davis, a native of Charlotte, N.C., has 23 stops, including 3.5 tackles for loss and two sacks, in 2021 to anchor the middle of Bulldog defense.  His presence has helped Georgia rank first nationally in Scoring Defense (7.5 points/game) and Total Defense (236.0 yards/game) and second in Rushing Defense (77.3 y/g).


The Bulldog offensive line unit has only allowed seven sacks this year.  That leads the SEC and ranks second nationally.  The Bulldogs are fifth in the country in lowest pressure percentage allowed.  Behind the protection of the unit, the Bulldogs are averaging 40.4 points/game and 201.2 yards/game rushing during Georgia’s 11-0 start.  Quarterback Stetson Bennett is ranked fifth nationally and on pace to set a school record in Passing Efficiency (181.5) behind the line.


A number of Georgia players had already been named award finalists.  Bennett (Burlsworth Trophy), Davis (Bronko Nagurski Trophy) and Dean (Butkus Award) are one of three candidates still eligible to garner these individual honors.  In addition, Dean had already been named to the 2021 Allstate AFCA Good Works Team.


The No. 1 Bulldogs (11-0, 8-0 SEC) travel to Atlanta to take on Georgia Tech (3-8, 2-6 ACC) on Saturday.  ABC will televise the matchup at noon.