South Carolina vs. Florida Gators photos 2019

Javon Kinlaw

South Carolina defensive tackle Javon Kinlaw has been named a semifinalist for the Chuck Bednarik Award, which recognizes the Outstanding Defensive Player of the Year, the Maxwell Football Club announced Tuesday.

Kinlaw, a 6-6, 310-pound senior, has filled up the stat line with 23 tackles including 5.0 sacks, tied for third in the SEC, three quarterback hurries, a pair of fumble recoveries and a blocked kick.

Kinlaw, who some NFL experts have labeled a first-round NFL draft pick, was the SEC Defensive Lineman of the Week for his performance at Georgia, and was a midseason All-American by both the AP (first team) and The Athletic (second team).

The field of 20 contenders is comprised of fresh faces, all of whom are making their debuts as Bednarik Award semifinalists. Six different conferences are represented, led by six student-athletes from the SEC and five from the Big Ten. The 2018 Bednarik Award went to Kentucky's Josh Allen.

Semifinalist voting will begin on Wednesday Oct. 30 and will close on Nov. 24. Three finalists will be announced on Nov. 25 and a second round of voting will take place at that time. Eligible voters include Maxwell Football Club members, NCAA head football coaches, sports information directors and selected national media.

The winner of the 25th Chuck Bednarik Award will be announced as part of the ESPN Home Depot College Football Awards Show presented by Gildan, which will be broadcast live on ESPN on Dec. 12, 2019.

The formal presentation of the award will be made at the Maxwell Football Club's Awards Dinner on Friday, March 6, 2020 at the Tropicana Casino & Resort in Atlantic City, New Jersey.