The Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame and the Jim Thorpe Association are proud to announce the 2022 Paycom Jim Thorpe Award Semifinalists

OKLAHOMA CITY–(BUSINESS WIRE)–The Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame today announced the 12 semifinalists for the 2022 Paycom Jim Thorpe Award, given to college football’s top defenseman. The award is based on performance on the field, athletic ability and character.

The dozen semi-finalists on this year’s list represent six conferences and are chosen by a selection committee. However, this list is not final and unlisted players who consistently excel throughout the season may be recognized as one of the three finalists.


Trevon flowersTennessee, Sr.

Emmanuel ForbesState of Mississippi, Jr.

Erick Hallett IIPittsburgh, Sr.

Tre’Vius Hodges-TomlinsonTCU, Sr.

Antonio JohnsonTexas A&M, Jr.

Clark Phillips IIIUtah, so.

Joey Porter, Jr.Pennsylvania, Jr.

Lathan’s ransomState of Ohio, Jr.

Benlee SandersNevada, Sr.

Christopher SchmidtGeorgia, Sr.

Jason Taylor IIState of Oklahoma, Sr.

Devon Witherspoonillinois, jr

By conference

ACC (1), BIG TEN (3), BIG 12 (2), MW (1), PAC-12 (1), SEC (4)

The Paycom Jim Thorpe Award Selection Committee will meet again on the Sunday after Thanksgiving to select three award finalists. The finalists for the award will be announced during a special presentation hosted by ESPN on Tuesday, November 29th. The honoree is selected from the three finalists by Paycom’s Jim Thorpe Award National Selection Committee, which is comprised of members of the NCFAA, an Oklahoma sports company, Hall of Fame Internal Awards Committee, past recipients of the Paycom Jim Thorpe Award, and sportswriters and college football journalists across the country.

The winner will be announced live on Thursday, December 8th The Home Depot College Football Awards. Other recognized awards from the National College Football Awards Association (NCFAA) include the Chuck Bednarik Award, the Maxwell Award, the John Mackey Award, the Dave Rimington Trophy, the Lou Groza Award, the Ray Guy Award, the Bronko Nagurski Trophy, the Outland Trophy , the Butkus Award and the Rotary Lombardi Award , Fred Biletnikoff Award, Davey O’Brien Award, Doak Walker Award and Walter Camp Player of the Year Award.

The official Paycom Jim Thorpe Awards ceremony will be held in Oklahoma City following ESPN’s live presentation The Home Depot College Football Awards. The current winner and all past winners are invited to celebrate each year. Over 600 supporters attend the Paycom Jim Thorpe Awards Banquet each year, including many celebrities and dignitaries. The Paycom Jim Thorpe Award commemorative banquet, including the first annual presentation of the newly established Aeneas Williams Award, is scheduled for Tuesday, February 7, 2023 in Oklahoma City.

For more information on the Paycom Jim Thorpe Award and the Aeneas Williams Award, visit

The Paycom Jim Thorpe Awards is a member of the National College Football Awards Association (NCFAA), which includes the most prestigious awards in college football. Founded in 1997, the NCFAA and its 25 awards now have over 800 recipients dating back to 1935. Visit and @NCFAA on Twitter to learn more about this association.

That Paycom Jim Thorpe Prize is awarded to the top defenseman in college football based on performance on the field, athletic ability, and character. Established in 1986, the award is named after the greatest all-around athlete in history, Jim Thorpe. Thorpe excelled as a running back, passer, and kicker on the offensive side of the ball, but also excelled as a defensive back. In addition to his legendary performance on the soccer field, Thorpe played professional baseball and won Olympic gold medals in the decathlon and pentathlon. The Paycom Jim Thorpe Award is widely recognized as one of the nation’s top college sports awards.

Paycom Software, Inc. (“Paycom”) (NYSE: PAYC), a leading provider of comprehensive, cloud-based human resource management software, and the Jim Thorpe Museum and Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame jointly announced exclusive sponsorship of the Jim Thorpe Award in May 2017. For this reason, the award was called the Paycom Jim Thorpe Award.


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