The Louisiana State University football program has produced the past two Jim Thorpe Award winners. Morris Claiborne and Patrick Peterson in 2011 and 2010, respectively, were honored as college football’s best defensive back.
The Tigers have another superstar defensive back hoping to make it three in a row. Tyrann Mathieu, also known as “Honey Badger,” placed fifth in the 2011 Heisman Trophy voting.
Although Mathieu was the only defensive player named a Heisman Trophy finalist in 2011, he was not named a finalist for the Jim Thorpe Award. In other words, Mathieu was considered the best Heisman candidate on defense, but was not considered one of the best defensive backs.
This phenomenon should confuse college football fans.
Nevertheless, a new debate has risen for the 2012 season. Who is college football’s top corner right now: Mathieu or David Amerson—who made the Jim Thorpe Award final three in 2011 from North Carolina State University? Or is there someone else flying under the radar?
Let’s take a look at 10 of these young men who have a good chance at winning the 2012 Jim Thorpe Award from the cornerback position.