The great offseason of 2016 Husky hype continued today with the release of the Maxwell Award and Bednarik Award watch lists, which each year honor the "college football player of the year" and "college defensive player of the year," respectively. Quarterback Jake Browning and running back Myles Gaskin were included in the Maxwell watch list, while safety Budda Baker and cornerback Sidney Jones were named to the Bednarik watch list.
The watch list for the @TheMaxwellAward was released with @Jake_Browning and @MylesGAS both on the list. pic.twitter.com/hRN0qYMciS— UW Football (@UW_Football) July 5, 2016
Congrats to @SidneyJonesIV & @buddabaker32. Both named to @BednarikAward watch list.— UW Football (@UW_Football) July 5, 2016
Read: https://t.co/5zNW9V2Kj0 pic.twitter.com/7xlOiSe9Fw
Browning earned Pro Football Focus' highest grade for a true freshman quarterback in 2015, outshining his more heralded counterpart at UCLA, Josh Rosen by completing 63.1 percent of his passes at a solid clip of 8.0 yards per attempt. Meanwhile, PFF ranks Gaskin as the second-best true sophomore at any position in the nation on the strength of his 1,302 yard, 14-touchdown debut campaign.
On the defensive side of the ball, Jones' four interceptions tied for third-most in the Pac-12 while his 14 passes defensed set the pace for the rest of the league. Baker was no slouch himself, even if his name doesn't fly off the stat sheet; rather, he makes his impact patrolling the middle of the field while displaying his natural talent for putting himself in the position to disrupt plays and cause incomplete passes that might otherwise go for big gains and third-down conversions.
Be sure to watch the highlight videos of all four players below.