University of Louisville running back Jawhar Jordan was one of 53 players to have been selected for the Paul Hornung Award Pre-Season Watch List on Thursday..

Jordan led the Cardinals in rushing last season with 815 yards and four touchdowns. Appearing in 13 games, Jordan recorded four 100-yard rushing games, including three consecutive games to close the season. He rushed for 105 yards in a win over North Carolina State and registered a season high 145 yards in a loss to Kentucky. The Long Island, N.Y., native was named the Most Valuable Player of the Fenway Bowl after rushing for 115 yards and a pair of scores in a win over Cincinnati.

As a kick returner, Jordan has returned two kickoff for touchdowns over the last two seasons, scoring on a 98-yarder last season and a 100-yard return in the bowl game versus Air Force in 2021.

Now in its 14th season, the Paul Hornung Award is given annually to the most versatile player in major college football by the Louisville Sports Commission in memory of the late football legend and Louisville native Paul Hornung. The winner and his family will be honored at the annual Paul Hornung Award dinner in Louisville, Ky., in March 2024.

The players represent 53 different schools and last season combined for more than 56,000 total yards and more than 1,700 points. The vast majority of the players on the Watch List – 47 – play offensive skill positions and all but one are return specialists; six players are defensive backs and return specialists.

By conference, the ACC leads with nine players, followed by the Big 12 with eight, the Pac 12 with seven, and the Big 10 and CUSA with six each. The SEC and Mountain West each have five players on the list, the AAC four, the MAC three and the Sun Belt two. Independent schools Notre Dame and UConn each have one player on the list.

The Paul Hornung Award has created an impressive legacy in 13 years including seven winners who were first-round NFL draft picks – Tavon Austin, Saquon Barkley, Odell Beckham Jr., Christian McCaffrey, Jabrill Peppers, DeVonta Smith and Shaq Thompson. Jack Colletto from Oregon State was named the 13th winner of the Paul Hornung Award in 2022 and the fourth from the Pac-12. A fifth-year senior with a degree in mechanical engineering who was named Academic All-District by the College Sports Communicators, on the field, the “Jackhammer” engineered the transition from part-time starting quarterback as a sophomore to a utility player who played nine different positions on offense and defense depending on the Beavers’ weekly game plan, and was a regular on all special teams.

Hornung, who passed away in his hometown at age 84 in Nov. 2020, played every position in the offensive backfield during his career with the Irish in the 1950s and also played defensive safety, punted, placekicked and returned kickoffs. He was named All-America at quarterback as a senior and won the Heisman Trophy in 1956, then was the first player selected in the NFL draft, going to Green Bay. He earned NFL MVP honors for the Packers in 1961 as a triple-threat halfback and placekicker by setting a single-season NFL scoring record that stood for 46 years. He is a member of the College and Pro Football Halls of Fame, and Vince Lombardi once called him, “The most versatile man ever to play the game.”

The 2023 Watch List was compiled by a panel of college football experts based on a combination of statistics, career performance, SID recommendations and expectations heading into the 2023 season. In addition to the Watch List, the Paul Hornung Award Weekly Honor Roll will recognize players whose performances during the regular season meet the Award’s criteria. Players from both the Watch List and the Weekly Honor Roll are eligible to win the Award.

2023 Watch List Selections

Brian Battie, Auburn

Trey Benson, FSU

Jonathan Brady, New Mexico State

Barion Brown, Kentucky

Jermaine Brown Jr., UAB

Phillip Brooks, Kansas State

Shadrick Byrd, Charlotte

Joshua Cephus, UTSA

Ron Cook Jr., Buffalo

Jacob Cowing, Arizona

Cooper DeJean, Iowa

MJ Devonshire, Pitt

Chimere Dike, Wisconsin

Emeka Egbuka, Ohio State

Trevor Etienne, Florida

Malik Fleming, Houston

Jaelen Gill, Fresno State

Anthony Gould, Oregon State

Lideatrick Griffin, Mississippi State

Smoke Harris, Louisiana Tech

George Holani, Boise State

Tory Horton, Colorado State

Travis Hunter, Colorado

Kris Hutson, Oregon

Jha’Quan Jackson, Tulane

Lexington Joseph, FIU

Jeshaun Jones, Maryland

Jawhar Jordan, Louisville

Brant Kuithe, Utah

Caullin Lacy, South Alabama

Jaylin Lane, Virginia Tech

Kenny Logan Jr., Kansas

Jaylin Lucas, Indiana

Jayden McGowan, Vanderbilt

Jaylin Noel, Iowa State

Ryan O’Keefe, Boston College

Trebor Pena, Syracuse

Ja’Shaun Poke, WVU

Brennan Presley, Oklahoma State

Victor Rosa, UConn

Trayvon Rudolph, Northern Illinois

Will Shipley, Clemson

Nicholas Singleton, Penn State

Cameron Skattebo, Arizona State

Jaylen Stinson, Duke

Jacquez Stuart, Toledo

Milan Tucker, Appalachian State

Chris Tyree, Notre Dame

Terrell Vaughn, Utah State

Tahj Washington, USC

LaJohntay Wester, FAU

Xavier Worthy, Texas

Luke Wysong, New Mexico

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