LSU added more preseason accolades to its already impressive list on Tuesday as three Tigers – Grant Delpit, Kristian Fulton, and Jacob Phillips – have been named candidates for the Nagurski Trophy, the Football Writers Association of America announced.
The Nagurski Trophy is presented annually to the defensive player of the year in college football by the FWAA. Delpit was one of five finalist for the Nagurski Trophy last year and is the lone returner from the group back in 2019.
Called the No. 1 defensive back in college football heading in to the 2019 season by USA Today, Delpit was a unanimous All-America selection last year. He’s also on preseason watch lists for the Thorpe Award (top defensive back) and Bednarik Award (top defensive player).
A year ago, Delpit led the Southeastern Conference interceptions (5) and ranked No. 2 in the league in passes defended (14). He also led the Tigers in sacks (5.0), finished third in tackles (74), and added another 10.5 tackles for loss on his way to becoming only the ninth unanimous All-America in school history.
Fulton returns for his second year as a starter at cornerback for the Tigers in 2019 after having a breakout season a year ago. Fulton is listed as the nation’s No. 3 rated defensive back by USA Today after recording 25 tackles, one interception, and 10 passes defended in 10 games in 2018.
Of Fulton, LSU Coach Ed Orgeron said, “he’s one of the top cornerbacks in the SEC, if not America.”
Fulton missed the final three games of the 2018 season with an injury but is healthy and will be 100 percent once camp starts in early August.
With the departure of Devin White to the NFL, Phillips is LSU’s top returning tackler from 2018 as he registered 87 tackles to go along with 5.5 tackles for loss. He also returned an interception 45 yards for a touchdown in LSU’s season-opening win over Miami. Phillips was named SEC Defensive Player of the Week for his performance in the win over the Hurricanes.
(Press Release provided by LSU Athletics)