De'Anthony Thomas and Kenjon Barner Both Named to Paul Hornung Award Watch List

Joey HollandCorrespondent IIAugust 5, 2012

Oregon running backs De'Anthony Thomas and Kenjon Barner have both been named to the preseason Paul Hornung Award watch list according to

The Paul Hornung Award is given to college football's most versatile player. 

Looking at the career stats of both Thomas and Barner, 'versatile' is an adjective that immediately comes to mind. 

Thomas was the only player in the country in 2011 to record more than 400 yards rushing, receiving and returning kicks. He finished sixth in the nation in total yards with 2,235 as a true freshman. 

In his three years behind LaMichael James on the depth chart, Kenjon Barner has proved to be a versatile offensive weapon. He has totaled 1,856 rushing yards, 335 receiving yards and 1,634 yards in the return game. Barner has also tallied 27 touchdowns in his career. 

Both Thomas and Barner should see increased touches in 2012. With the departure of LaMichael James, Barner will be the Ducks' No. 1 back. Thomas should share carries with him in the backfield and catch some passes out of the slot as well. 

Oregon is one of only four teams to have multiple players named to the Paul Hornung award watch list. 

Watch for Thomas and Barner to continue their success rushing, receiving and returning the ball in 2012.