(Photo by BYU Photo)
DALLAS – BYU center Tejan Koroma was named to the 2017 Outland Trophy Watch List on Thursday by The Football Writers Association of America. The Outland Trophy is presented to the nation’s most outstanding interior lineman.
A 6-foot, 290-pound senior from Allen, Texas, Koroma was graded as one of the top four centers in college football in 2016 by Pro Football Focus. Koroma has started every game he has played for the Cougars with 38 starts over his first three seasons. He was the only true freshman center in FBS Division I to start all 13 games at center in 2014, helping propel the Cougar offense to 37.1 points per game, No. 15 in the nation. Koroma was named an FWAA Freshman All-America, ESPN True Freshman All-America, 247Sports True Freshman All-America, Sporting News All-True Freshman and Phil Steele Freshman All-America following the 2014 season. Last year he anchored a BYU offensive line that helped Jamaal Williams rank No. 5 nationally in rushing yards per game while becoming the Cougars' all-time rushing leader.
BYU has had two Outland Trophy winners in the past. Defensive lineman Jason Buck won the award in 1986 and offensive lineman Mohammed Elewonibi in 1989.
Koroma is among 81 standout interior linemen from all 10 Division I FBS conferences represented. The ACC (17) led all conferences, followed by the Big Ten and SEC (11 each), Pac-12 (10), Big 12 and Mid-American (6 each), Independents and Mountain West (4 each), Conference USA (2) and Sun Belt (1).
The list includes 24 offensive tackles, 21 defensive tackles, 20 centers and 16 offensive guards. Select the following link to see the entire 2017 watch list.
The Outland Trophy winner is chosen from three finalists who are a part of the annual FWAA All-America Team. The FWAA All-America Committee, after voting input from the entire membership, selects a 26-man first team and eventually the three Outland finalists. Committee members, then by individual ballot, select the winner. Only interior linemen on offense or defense are eligible for the award; ends are not eligible.
The list will be trimmed to six or seven semifinalists on Wed., Nov. 15. Six days later, three Outland Trophy finalists will be named by the FWAA. The winner of the 72nd Outland Trophy – named after the late John Outland, an All-America lineman at Penn at the turn of the 20th century – will be announced live on ESPN on The Home Depot College Football Awards on Thurs., Dec. 7. For the third-straight year, the show will air from the National Football Foundation’s College Football Hall of Fame in Atlanta.
The Outland Trophy presentation banquet, sponsored by the Greater Omaha Sports Committee, will be held on Jan. 10, 2018, in Omaha, Nebraska. Former Florida State coach Bobby Bowden will receive the Tom Osbourne Legacy Award at the same banquet.
The Outland Trophy is a member of the National College Football Awards Association (NCFAA), which encompasses the most prestigious awards in college football. Founded in 1997, the NCFAA and its 23 awards now boast over 800 recipients, dating back to 1935. Visit www.ncfaa.org to learn more.