Each day this week brings more preseason award watch lists, and Notre Dame players keep popping up.
The watch lists for the Lou Groza Award and the Ray Guy Award were released Wednesday, and the watch lists for the Outland Trophy and the Bronko Nagurski Trophy were released Thursday. Both days featured Notre Dame representatives, with the kicker and defenders taking center stage.
Kicker Kyle Brindza was included on the watch list for the Groza Award, awarded annually to the country's top kicker. Last season as a junior, Brindza connected on 20-of-26 field-goal attempts and all 38 of his extra-point attempts. He accounted for 7.5 points per game, which was the 61st best mark in the entire country.
[MORE NOTRE DAME: Notre Dame lands several on early award watch lists]
While no Irish player landed on the Ray Guy Award watch list, Notre Dame defenders were present on the Outland Trophy and Nagurski Trophy lists released on Thursday. Defensive tackle Sheldon Day was included on the watch list for the Outland Trophy, handed out each year to the nation's best interior lineman (offensive or defensive). Day appeared in 11 games a season ago, starting eight of those. He had 5.5 tackles for loss and 0.5 sacks.
Meanwhile, defensive back KeiVarae Russell and linebacker Jaylon Smith were on the Nagurski Trophy watch list. Russell had 51 total tackles last season to go along with an interception, and Smith made 67 total tackles plus 6.5 tackles for loss and an interception. The Nagurski Trophy honors the best defensive player in the country, as does the Chuck Bednarik Award. Both Russell and Smith were included on that award's watch list earlier this week.