Gophers senior cornerbacks Eric Murray and Briean Boddy-Calhoun on Tuesday were among 80 players named to the watch list for the Bednarik Award, given annually to the nation's best defensive player.
In all, 13 cornerbacks are on the list, and the only other one from the Big Ten is Maryland's Will Likely.
Boddy-Calhoun had 51 tackles, two tackles for a loss, five interceptions and nine pass breakups last season, which earned him first-team All-Big Ten honors from the media and second-team from the coaches.
Murray had 69 tackles, one interception and seven pass breakups, along with two blocked kicks, which earned him second-team All-Big Ten honors from the coaches and honorable mention from the media.
The last time the Gophers had a player named to the Bednarik Award preseason watch list was in 2013 with defensive tackle Ra'Shede Hageman. The watch list for the Thorpe Award, given to the nation's top defensive back, comes out next Monday.
Here's a link to the full watch lists for the Bednarik Award and Maxwell Award (college player of the year), which also came out Tuesday.