TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Florida State redshirt sophomore Derwin James has been named a semifinalist for the Paycom Jim Thorpe Award, it was announced Monday.
James is tied for the team lead with 37 tackles, including 1.5 for loss with 0.5 sack, and has added four pass breakups. The Haines City, Florida, native returned from an injury that cost him most of the 2016 season to become regarded as one of the most versatile defenders in the country. James has started all six games this season at safety and is also one of the Seminoles’ primary kick returners, accumulating 118 yards on four kickoff returns for an average of 29.5 yards per return.
James, who was named a quarterfinalist for the Lott IMPACT Trophy last week, is the only sophomore included among the Thorpe Award semifinalists. He is also one of three semifinalists from the ACC.
Florida State has two Thorpe Award winners in its history. Deion Sanders was the 1988 winner, and Terrell Buckley brought the 1991 trophy to Tallahassee.
The Paycom Thorpe Award is named after history’s greatest athlete, Jim Thorpe, and is presented by the Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame and Jim Thorpe Association in Oklahoma City. The three Thorpe Award finalists will be named on Monday, Nov. 20, and the winner will be announced live on ESPN at the Home Depot College Football Awards Show on Dec. 7.
Florida State returns to action Friday at Boston College. The game is set for an 8 p.m. kickoff on ESPN.