Oruwariye named Thorpe Award semifinalist

October 22, 2018

Senior cornerback Amani Oruwariye is among the 14 semifinalists for the Paycom Jim Thorpe Award, which is given to the best defensive back in college football. Oruwariye is one of two Big Ten defensive backs on the list.

The three finalists for the 2018 Paycom Jim Thorpe Award will be named on Monday, Nov. 19, at 11 a.m. and the winner will be announced live at the Home Depot College Football Awards Show on Dec. 6, airing on ESPN. The winner of the 2018 Paycom Jim Thorpe Award will be honored at a banquet in Oklahoma City on Feb. 5, 2019.

Oruwariye ranks second in the Big Ten and No. 11 in FBS with 1.6 passes defended per game. He is also eighth in the conference with two interceptions this season. He has a career-high 33 tackles on the year, which is sixth on the team. He was named to the Pro Football Focus  (PFF) Midseason All-Big Ten team. Oruwariye claimed spots on the PFF National and Big Ten Teams of the Week following his performance against Pittsburgh the second week of the season. He is one of 10 Penn Staters to enter 2018 with a degree, earning a degree in telecommunications in December 2017.

The Paycom Jim Thorpe Award is awarded to the best defensive back in college football based on performance on the field, athletic ability and character. The award was established in 1986 and is named after history's greatest all-around athlete, Jim Thorpe. Thorpe excelled not only as a running back, passer and kicker on the offensive side of the ball; but also stood out as a defensive back. In addition to his legendary performance on the football field, Thorpe played professional baseball and won Olympic gold medals in the decathlon and pentathlon. 

Last Updated October 23, 2018