Bennett Named to Walter Camp Watchlist
Aug. 22, 2007
Nashville, Tenn. - Vanderbilt All-America wide receiver Earl Bennett is one of 35 "players to watch" by the Walter Camp Football Foundation for its prestigious Player of the Year award, the nation's fourth-oldest individual college football accolade.
Bennett, a junior from Birmingham, Ala., who is approaching several Southeastern Conference career receiving marks, is one of just two SEC offensive players named to the watchlist. The other is talented Arkansas tailback Darren McFadden.
"Earl is a very deserving candidate for the Walter Camp Player of the Year award, and will be considered for several other honors," Vanderbilt Head Coach Bobby Johnson. "There isn't a player in the nation that has been more productive than Earl Bennett in his first two years. He's also an outstanding young man, and a tremendous representative for our team and university."
The Walter Camp Foundation will narrow the 35 candidates to ten semifinalists in early November. The 2007 Walter Camp Player of the Year recipient, which is voted on by the 119 NCAA Bowl Subdivision head coaches and sports information directors, will be announced on the ESPN/Home Depot College Football Awards Show in December. The winner will then receive his trophy at the Foundation's annual national awards banquet on January 12 at the Yale University Commons in New Haven.
Last year's Player of the Year recipient was Ohio State quarterback Troy Smith.
Bennett, who needs 48 receptions this season to become the SEC's all-time leader, is coming off consecutive stellar seasons, catching 79 and 82 passes in 2005 and 2006, respectively. He is the only receiver in SEC history to post two seasons of at least 75 receptions. He earned All-America recognition from Rivals.com.
This preseason, Bennett also has been named to to watchlists for the Maxwell and Biletnikoff awards, several All-America squads and virtually every All-SEC first team.
Bennett is one of four receivers named to the Player of the Year watchlist. The others include senior Jarett Dillard of Rice, senior Mario Manningham of Michigan and senior Limas Sweed of Texas.
Other players from the SEC named to the watchlist are senior linebacker Jasper Brinkley of South Carolina; senior defensive tackle Glenn Dorsey of LSU; senior safety/returner Jonathan Hefney of Tennessee; junior defensive end Tyson Jackson of LSU.
Commodores Conclude Two-a-Days Wednesday
Vanderbilt is expected to conclude its final two-a-day practice Wednesday evening at the John Rich Practice Facility. The squad worked out in partial gear Wednesday morning, and returned to work in full gear during the afternoon session.
Johnson put the Commodores through five two-a-day sessions in the last 10 days, all held outdoors in the midst of a record heat wave in the Nashville area. The team will continue preparations for its season opener against the University of Richmond on a single practice on Friday.
Sophomore Quinn Leaves Squad
Johnson announced late Tuesday the departure of Matt Quinn, a sophomore long snapper from Wellford, S.C. The coach said Quinn cited personal reasons for leaving the team. Quinn served as the team's primary long snapper as a true freshman last year.