Jan 2, 2014; New Orleans, LA, USA; Oklahoma Sooners defensive end Charles Tapper (91) celebrates in the endzone after defensive end Geneo Grissom (not pictured) scored on a fumble return during the fourth quarter of a game at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. Oklahoma defeated Alabama 45-31. Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

Shannon, Striker, and Tapper named to 2014 Bednarik Award Watch List

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With college football award watch lists unveiled over the next two weeks, the Maxwell Football Club announced its Bednarik Watch List Monday morning along with the Maxwell Award.

The 20th annual Bednarik Award will be presented to the nation’s defensive player of the year. Three Sooners were named to its list.

Oklahoma’s leading tackler from last season Frank Shannon made the cut, as well as a huge fan favorite in Erik Striker and monster defensive end Charles Tapper.

Shannon’s future seemed a bit in doubt, but it appears like he’ll be back for the 2014 season. He had a total of 92 tackles in 2013, an interception, and two sacks.

Fellow linebacker Erik Striker, also, was placed on the Bednarik Watch List. After accumulating 50 tackles, and leading OU with 6.5 sacks, Striker will look to uphold his reputation as a hard-hitter who possesses a great deal of speed coming off the edge.

Charles Tapper had 49 tackles in 2013 and 5.5 sacks. He made the list as well, as OU’s lone true defensive lineman on the list.

Only one Sooner has won the Bednarik Award before. Teddy Lehman over a decade ago in 2003 won it the year Oklahoma played for the BCS National Championship.

All three of these players have great potential beyond their college careers in the NFL, but Oklahoma has the great fortune to have them on the same team for at least one more season.

The Sooners open their 2014 season against the Louisiana Tech in less than 60 days. To see the rest of the Bednarik Award Watch List, as well as the Maxwell, click here.

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Tags: Charles Tapper Erik Striker Football Frank Shannon Oklahoma Sooners

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