There’s been only one multiple-time winner of the Stats Perform FCS Buck Buchanan Award, but Southern University’s Jordan Lewis will be in a rush to match that feat this fall.

A pass rush, that is.

Lewis, who after the spring season was named the national defensive player of the year in college football’s Division I subdivision, headlined a preseason watch list of 35 players that Stats Perform announced for the 2021 season on Thursday.

The 6-foot-3 Lewis ranked No. 1 in the FCS in sacks and tackles for loss as well as lost yardage in both statistics. But 13 other spring finalists, including third-place finisher Stone Snyder of VMI, are on the standout preseason watch list, which is as follows:

Defensive Linemen

Jared Brinkman, Northern Iowa (2020-21 finalist)

Isaiah Chambers, McNeese (2020-21 finalist)

DJ Coleman, Jacksonville State

Mike Greene, James Madison (2020-21 finalist)

Malik Hamm, Lafayette

Jahari Kay, Sam Houston (2020-21 finalist)

Jordan Lewis, Southern (2020-21 recipient)

Shaundre Mims, Charleston Southern

Kobie Turner, Richmond


Troy Andersen, Montana State

Logan Backhaus, South Dakota State

Ryan Greenhagen, Fordham (2020-21 finalist)

Willie Eubanks III, The Citadel (2019 finalist)

Tre Jones, Central Connecticut State

James Kaczor, North Dakota State

La’akea Kaho’ohanohano-Davis, Southern Utah (2020-21 finalist)

Titus Leo, Wagner (2020-21 finalist)

Jace Lewis, Montana

Forrest Rhyne, Villanova

Stone Snyder, VMI (2020-21 finalist)

Jeremiah Tyler, Princeton

Tre Walker, Idaho (2020-21 finalist)

Tristan Wheeler, Richmond (2020-21 finalist)

Defensive Backs

Anthony Adams, Portland State (2019 finalist)

Markquese Bell, Florida A&M

Qua Brown, Southern Illinois

Anthony Budd, Monmouth

Decobie Durant, South Carolina State

Brandon Easterling, Dayton (2019 finalist)

Chris Edmonds, Samford (2020-21 finalist)

Marcis Floyd, Murray State

Nicario Harper, Jacksonville State (2020-21 finalist)

Kordell Jackson, Austin Peay (2019 and 2020-21 finalist)

Ferlando Jordan, Southeastern Louisiana

Zyon McCollum, Sam Houston

More players can join the watch list during the regular season, and a national media panel will select the winner following it. Dexter Coakley won the inaugural Buchanan in 1995 and repeated a year later, but there hasn’t been a two-time recipient since, although other past winners such as Rashean Mathis, Jared Allen and Arthur Moats joined Coakley with excellent NFL careers.

Also this season, Stats Perform will present the Walter Payton Award (FCS offensive player of the year), Jerry Rice Award (FCS freshman player of the year), Eddie Robinson Award (FCS coach of the year) and Doris Robinson Scholar-Athlete of the Year.