EAST LANSING, Mich. -- Running back LJ Scott has been named to the 2017 Doak Walker Award Watch List, the PwC SMU Athletic Forum announced Thursday. The Doak Walker Award, which will name its 28th recipient in 2017, is named for SMU’s three-time All-America running back Doak Walker.
Scott is one of 10 players from the Big Ten on the 61-player watch list.
This is Scott’s second preseason watch list honor, as he was tabbed to the Maxwell Award Watch List last week.
Last season, Scott led the Spartans in nearly every rushing category, compiling career highs in rushing yards (994), carries (184) and rushing touchdowns (6), on the way to being named a third-team All-Big Ten selection by the media and honorable mention choice by the coaches. Scott’s 82.8 rushing yards per game average ranked eighth in the Big Ten during the regular season and his 86.9 ypg in conference play was sixth best. With 994 rushing yards, Scott posted the seventh most by a Spartan sophomore in a single season. He also had a team-best 10 runs of 20 yards or longer.
With five 100-yard games, Scott tied for third most in the Big Ten in the regular season, including four of the last six games (109.7 ypg last six games) of the 2016 season. He collected career highs in rushing yards (160), all-purpose yards (236) and receiving yards (76) vs. No. 2 Ohio State on Nov. 19, scoring on the second play from scrimmage against the Buckeyes on a career-long 64-yard TD reception and also recorded a career-long rush with a 61-yard scamper in the first quarter. Scott finished with 19 carries for 160 yards (8.4 avg.) and two catches for 76 yards vs. OSU. He also rushed for 139 yards against No. 2 Michigan on Oct. 29, the most by a player against the Wolverines during the regular season.
Scott also compiled 100-yard games against Furman (105), Maryland (128) and Rutgers (122). He also had 98 yards with a touchdown on 22 carries in the 36-28 win at No. 18 Notre Dame on Sept. 17.
Entering his junior season, Scott has rushed for 1,693 yards (65.1 ypg; 5.1 avg.) and 17 touchdowns in 26 career games, including 11 starts. The 1,693 career rushing yards are fifth most by a Spartan through their sophomore season.
The PwC SMU Athletic Forum Board of Directors will name ten semifinalists on November 15. Three finalists, as voted on by the Doak Walker Award National Selection Committee, will be announced November 20. The committee will cast a second vote beginning November 26 to determine the recipient. The National Selection Committee consists of past recipients, former NFL All-Pro and college All-America running backs, media members and selected special representatives.
The recipient of the 2017 Doak Walker Award will be announced live on The Home Depot College Football Awards on Thursday, December 7 on ESPN. The Doak Walker Award Presentation Banquet is scheduled for February 16, 2018 in Dallas.