Thomas, a 6-foot-6, 257-pound redshirt senior from Lynchburg, Va., made the watch list for the Maxwell Award, which goes to college football’s top player. Gayle, a 6-4, 253-pound redshirt senior from Hampton, Va., made the list for the Bednarik Award, which is bestowed on the nation’s top defensive player.
Eighteen players from the Atlantic Coast Conference made one of the two lists, including QBs Tajh Boyd of Clemson, Bryn Renner of North Carolina and Stephen Morris of Miami and wide receiver Sammy Watkins of Clemson (Maxwell), and Florida State defensive tackle, Timmy Jernigan, linebacker Christian Jones and safety Lamarcus Joyner (Bednarik).
Both awards are given out by the Maxwell Football Club. For the complete lists, visit the Maxwell Football Club website.