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Simmons, Sweat secure preseason watch list honors

Junior defensive tackle Jeffery Simmons and senior defensive end Montez Sweat were both selected to the Nagurski Trophy Watch List, making MSU one of just six Southeastern Conference programs to boast two student-athletes as a preseason candidate for the award. Simmons was also added to the Outland Trophy Watch List on Tuesday.

Posted: Jul 24, 2018 11:21 PM
Updated: Jul 25, 2018 12:26 AM

STARKVILLE, Miss. - Honors continue to roll in for Mississippi State as the Football Writers Association of American released watch lists for the Bronko Nagurski and the Outland Trophy on Tuesday with both trophies featuring a Bulldog as preseason candidates.

Junior defensive tackle Jeffery Simmons and senior defensive end Montez Sweat were both selected to the Nagurski Trophy Watch List, making MSU one of just six Southeastern Conference programs to boast two student-athletes as a preseason candidate for the award. Simmons was also added to the Outland Trophy Watch List on Tuesday.

Simmons and Sweat helped forge a Bulldog defense that ranked 10th nationally in total defense last season, issuing only 306.3 yards per game. It was best total defensive mark at MSU since 1999. Earlier this month, the duo was also named to the Bednarik Award Watch List and selected to the preseason All-SEC First Team.

Despite being double-teamed for most of the 2017 season, Simmons recorded 60 tackles and was tabbed a first-team All-SEC honoree. The Macon, Miss., native ranked 11th in the conference with 12.0 tackles for loss, which includes a career-best five sacks. Defensively, he forced and recovered two fumbles while tallying three blocks on special teams, which tied SMU's Justin Lawler for the national lead.

Simmons also scored twice last season with two touchdowns at Louisiana Tech, becoming the first MSU defensive player since Johnathan Banks in 2009 to score twice in a game. Simmons was also a two-time SEC Defensive Player of the Week honoree in 2017.

Sweat collected a league-best 10.5 sacks and 15.5 tackles for loss in his debut season en route to a first-team All-SEC selection. The 10.5 sacks ranked seventh in MSU single-season annals as he became the first Bulldog to lead the league in sacks since Willie Evans in 2005. That total also tied for eighth nationally last season. His tackle for loss total tied for fifth in Bulldog single-season history.

A three-time SEC Defensive Lineman of the Week recipient in 2017, Sweat recorded at least one tackle for loss in 10 of MSU's 13 games. The Stone Mountain, Ga., native ranked sixth overall on the squad in tackles in 2017 with 46.

The official presentation of the Outland Trophy, which is presented to the nation's top interior lineman, will be made at the Werner Enterprises Outland Trophy Awards Dinner produced by the Greater Omaha Sports Committee on Jan. 9, 2019. Up to seven semifinalists will be named on Nov. 14 and three finalists for the award will be announced on Nov. 19. The FWAA and the Charlotte Touchdown Club will announce five finalists for the 2018 Bronko Nagurski Trophy on Nov. 14. The 2018 Bronko Nagurski Award, which honors the national defensive player of the year, will be awarded on Monday, Dec. 3.

2018 Mississippi State Preseason Honors

Nick Fitzgerald, Sr., QB
Third-Team All-SEC (Media)
Maxwell Award Watch List
Davey O'Brien Award Watch List

Elgton Jenkins, Sr., OL
Rimington Trophy Fall Watch List

Mark McLaurin, Sr., S
Third-Team All-SEC (Media)

Jeffery Simmons, Jr., DT
First-Team All-SEC (Media, Phil Steele)
Athlon Sports Preseason All-American (Second Team)
Bednarik Award Watch List
Outland Trophy Watch List
Bronko Nagurski Trophy Watch List

Montez Sweat, Sr., DE
First-Team All-SEC (Media, Phil Steele)
Athlon Sports Preseason All-American (Third Team)
Bednarik Award Watch List
Bronko Nagurski Trophy Watch List

Aeris Williams, Sr., RB
Third-Team All-SEC (Media)
Doak Walker Award Watch List

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 143879

Reported Deaths: 3676
CountyCasesDeaths
DeSoto952799
Hinds9520193
Harrison6801105
Jackson6043116
Rankin521996
Lee477094
Madison4595102
Forrest360685
Jones341687
Lauderdale3340142
Lafayette312047
Washington3043106
Lamar273849
Bolivar237583
Oktibbeha237460
Lowndes227562
Neshoba2170113
Panola210347
Marshall206547
Leflore200389
Pontotoc192527
Monroe188877
Sunflower188754
Lincoln183664
Warren171757
Tate163049
Pike159958
Union159025
Copiah158840
Yazoo149538
Scott149429
Coahoma146742
Itawamba144433
Simpson143153
Alcorn142724
Pearl River142067
Prentiss138426
Grenada135844
Adams134148
Leake131643
Holmes124261
George121523
Tippah120430
Covington116434
Winston115824
Wayne115522
Hancock113337
Marion109046
Attala106133
Tishomingo105542
Newton102829
Chickasaw102132
Tallahatchie94727
Clarke88153
Clay86226
Jasper80421
Walthall73728
Montgomery71925
Calhoun71213
Stone71014
Carroll70114
Lawrence69814
Noxubee68917
Smith68616
Yalobusha67626
Perry63925
Tunica59519
Greene58222
Claiborne57416
Jefferson Davis53817
Humphreys52318
Amite50714
Benton48217
Quitman4766
Webster41614
Kemper40615
Wilkinson38422
Jefferson33511
Franklin3155
Sharkey30617
Choctaw3057
Issaquena1094
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Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 232506

Reported Deaths: 3457
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson30318491
Mobile19260356
Tuscaloosa12446148
Madison12204146
Montgomery12000232
Shelby971276
Baldwin819984
Lee750464
Morgan610447
Calhoun5964113
Etowah585764
Marshall579453
Houston503338
DeKalb460835
Cullman409636
Limestone400844
St. Clair396055
Elmore391061
Lauderdale378353
Walker348096
Talladega334042
Colbert294341
Jackson290524
Blount275436
Autauga261739
Franklin243633
Coffee230315
Dale225454
Dallas219631
Russell21753
Chilton216137
Covington212333
Escambia194031
Tallapoosa168590
Chambers167548
Clarke154919
Pike154714
Marion133935
Winston122523
Lawrence121436
Geneva11678
Marengo116424
Barbour116010
Pickens114118
Bibb113617
Butler113341
Randolph99521
Cherokee98524
Hale91531
Washington89818
Clay88823
Henry8386
Fayette83116
Lowndes78529
Monroe76811
Cleburne74214
Crenshaw70030
Macon69420
Bullock68919
Conecuh66814
Perry6686
Wilcox62318
Lamar6227
Sumter55322
Choctaw41713
Greene39917
Coosa3064
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