Six SEC players named to the Paul Hornung Award watch list

With the college football season inching closer and closer as these long summer days come and go, one of the first signs of the coming season is the release of award watch lists. Monday the official watch list for the Paul Hornung Award was released and features six SEC players. 

Pharoh Cooper – South Carolina Gamecocks

Don't let the down season fool you, Cooper was outstanding last season for the Gamecocks, as he accumulated 1592 yards of total offense and 11 touchdowns. It wasn't Cooper's fault the defense collapsed so many times last season.

Leonard Fournette – LSU Tigers

After rushing for an LSU freshman record of 1034 yards on the ground and 10 touchdowns, the nation anxiously awaits what Fournette will do for an encore. Fournette is also a dangerous kick return, as he averaged 26 yards a return last season and had a return for a touchdown against Notre Dame in the Music City Bowl.

Isaiah McKenzie – Georgia Bulldogs

After receiving only 13 touches on offense last season, expect an expanded role this year for the explosive McKenzie. The 160-pound halfback is one of the nation's top returners in the nation, as he returned three kicks last season. Against Kentucky, McKenzie returned both a punt and a kickoff for six. 

Speedy Noil – Texas A&M Aggies

The former five-star recruit is projected to burst onto the scene after catching 46 passes for 583 yards and five touchdowns last season. Noil is also a threat to return kicks, as he averaged nearly 24 yards a return last season.

Jaylen Walton – Ole Miss Rebels

Walton will be asked to jump up and become the starter in Oxford after splitting carries the last three seasons. His ability to catch the ball out of the backfield as well as return kicks makes Walton a threat to score from anywhere on the field.

Stanley "Boom" Williams – Kentucky Wildcats

After racking up more than 700 yards of total offense and six touchdowns a season ago, look for the man they call Boom to bust out in his sophomore season on campus. If Kentucky is to return to a bowl game for the first time under Mark Stoops, Williams will need to up his production across the board this season.

The mission statement of the Paul Hornung Award: 

"The mission of the award is to recognize and reward versatile, high-level performers in major college football; to help preserve the legacy Hornung, of one of Louisville's native sons and sports icons"