Dupree, who on Monday was named to the Chuck Bednarik Award Preseason Watch List, is one of 81 defensive players on the Bronko Nagurski Trophy Watch List, which has named the National Defensive Player of the Year since 1993. The senior is one of 23 defensive ends on the list, which features student-athletes from eight of the 10 NCAA Division I Bowl Subdivision conferences.
The native of Irwinton, Ga., is coming off a strong junior season that saw him lead all Southeastern Conference defensive linemen with 61 tackles. Dupree, who turned down an early chance at the NFL by returning to Kentucky for his senior season, finished 2013 with a team-best seven sacks, which ranked sixth in the conference and 40th in all of college football. Overall last season, Dupree had a team-high 9.5 tackles for loss, one pass breakup, three quarterback hurries and two fumbles forced.
The best game of his impressive career came last season at Mississippi State when he posted 13 stops, two tackles for loss and a sack. The 13 tackles in a game were the most for a UK defensive lineman since game-by-game records were available back to the 1993 season.
Dupree’s strong junior season drew praise as he was named a second-team All-SEC performer by the Associated Press and Phil Steele’s College Football, and third-team All-SEC by College Sports Madness.
Dupree, who served as a captain in 10 of UK's 12 games in 2013, was named Sophomore All-America second team in 2012 by CollegeFootballNews.com and was an All-SEC third-team honoree by Phil Steele's College Football and College Football Madness in 2012.
The FWAA will choose a Bronko Nagurski National Defensive Player of the Week each Tuesday throughout the season. If not already on the watch list, the honored player will be added at that time. The FWAA and the Charlotte Touchdown Club will announce five finalists for the 2014 Bronko Nagurski Trophy Nov. 20.
The Bronko Nagurski Trophy winner will be chosen from those five finalists who are part of the 2014 FWAA All-America Team. The FWAA All-America Committee, after voting input from the association's entire membership, selects the 26-man All-America Team and eventually the Nagurski finalists. Committee members, then by individual ballot, select the winner, the best defensive player in America.
The annual Bronko Nagurski Trophy Banquet will be held Dec. 8 at the Westin Hotel in Charlotte.
In 1995, the FWAA named the award in honor of the legendary two-way player from the University of Minnesota. Nagurski dominated college football then became a star for professional football's Chicago Bears in the 1930s. Bronislaw “Bronko” Nagurski is a charter member of both the College Football and Pro Football Halls of Fame.Pittsburgh tackle Aaron Donald won the award last season.
Information provided by UK Athletics
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