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Kinchens and Taylor III Named to 2023 Chuck Bednarik Award Preseason Watch List + Other Top Nominations to Watch

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Defensive Tackle - Leonard Taylor III | Photo Credit: University of Miami Athletics

In a thrilling announcement that has sparked anticipation for the upcoming season among the Miami Hurricanes football fanbase, junior safety Kamren Kinchens and junior defensive tackle Leonard Taylor III have emerged as standout contenders on the preseason watch list for the esteemed 2023 Chuck Bednarik Award. This distinguished honor, bestowed by the Maxwell Football Club, seeks to celebrate the most exceptional defensive player in the realm of college football.

Kamren Kinchens, who had already risen to the stature of a first-team All-American during his sophomore season with the Hurricanes, has further solidified his exceptional reputation by securing his fifth significant accolade of the preseason in 2023. His accomplishments are nothing short of remarkable. Not only did he earn a coveted spot on the Chuck Bednarik Award watch list, but he also showcased his brilliance by being named to the watch lists for the illustrious Wuerffel Trophy, the esteemed Nagurski Trophy, and the revered Thorpe Award. Additionally, Kinchens basked in the glory of Preseason All-ACC recognition, a testament to his undeniable prowess and leadership on the field. With an unmatched drive, Kinchens spearheaded the Hurricanes with an astonishing 59 total tackles, starting in all 12 games and capping his remarkable feat with a team-high six interceptions during the 2022 season. The immense contribution he made to his team’s defense cannot be overstated.

Leonard Taylor III, a menacing pass rusher in his own right, carved his place among the conference’s elite with his formidable performance last year, clinching All-ACC Honorable Mention recognition. Taylor’s indomitable spirit and prowess manifested through nine starts, as he stood as a lighthouse of defensive excellence for the Miami team in 2022. Astounding numbers paint a vivid picture of Taylor’s relentless dedication, as he tallied 24 total tackles, 10.5 tackles for loss, one interception, and led the Hurricanes’ defense with six quarterback hurries. His presence on the field proved nothing short of disruptive, earning him the esteemed title of one of the conference’s most formidable linemen.

The resonance of Miami’s excellence extends beyond Kinchens and Taylor III, as a group of other Hurricanes have rightfully earned their places on the preseason watch lists for pivotal awards. Javion Cohen secured his spot on the Outland Trophy watch list, while Matt Lee was recognized on the Rimington Award watch list. Elijah Arroyo earned a place on the Mackey Award watch list, and the exceptional Andy Borregales garnered a nomination on the Groza Award watch list.

In summation, the inclusion of Kamren Kinchens and Leonard Taylor III on the 2023 Chuck Bednarik Award preseason watch list is a testament to their unwavering dedication, exceptional talent, and relentless pursuit of excellence. As anticipation for the upcoming football season continues to mount, their names stand as a testament to the caliber of athletes being developed under the tutelage of Head Coach Mario Cristobal.

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