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Three Wolverines named to Bronko Nagurski Award watch list

The Wolverines’ defense looks to be elite again under Jesse Minter.

NCAA Football: Big Ten Football Media Day Robert Goddin-USA TODAY Sports

Another day, another group of Michigan players named to preseason award watch lists. On Tuesday, linebacker Junior Colson, safety Rod Moore and defensive tackle Kris Jenkins were among 94 players named to the Bronko Nagurski Award watch list. The award honors the nation’s best defensive player.

Colson was named second team All-Big Ten by the coaches and third team All-Big Ten by the media in 2022. He had a team-leading 101 tackles last season, including 42 solo tackles and six tackles for loss with two sacks. Colson projects to be one of the Big Ten’s best linebackers this fall and will be leaned on heavily, especially against the run.

Moore was an All-Big Ten honorable mention last year, with a team-leading four interceptions and 71 tackles, including 48 solo tackles. Moore is a Pro Football Focus Preseason All-Big Ten first-teamer and is one of the most experienced players in Michigan’s defensive backfield alongside Mike Sainristil.

Jenkins was also named to the Outland Trophy watch list on Tuesday for best interior lineman — which was won by Olu Oluwatimi last season — so it’s no surprise to see his name pop up on the Nagurski Award watch list as well. He was an honorable mention All-Big Ten player in his first full year as a starter with 54 tackles, 3.5 tackles for loss and two sacks. This offseason, Jim Harbaugh said he was “potentially our best player on the defense.” Expectations are sky-high for Jenkins, but so is his potential.