Philadelphia, PA (SportsNetwork.com) - Sometimes, despite how good an offense can be at slowing down a team's defense, there's just no stopping a standout defensive player from disrupting an offensive scheme.
Harvard defensive end Zach Hodges is the type of player whom teams have had trouble containing early in the 2013 season, which has led to the junior being added to the Buck Buchanan Award Watch List on Tuesday.
The All-America candidate is eligible for the 19th annual award given to the nation's premiere defensive standout.
The winner will join other Buck Buchanan Award recipients such as Arthur Moats, Kroy Biermann, Jared Allen, Rashean Mathis and Dexter Coakley.
Hodges, having only played in four games as a result of the Ivy League's later start to its schedule, has wasted no time getting involved. The 6-foot-3, 235- pounder has recorded 19 total tackles with a monster 8.5 tackles for loss in those four contests. He's also tied for the team lead with 4.5 sacks.
But his versatility may be his best asset. The junior has forced two fumbles and recovered three, broken up a pass and recorded an interception over the four games.
Hodges is a lean defensive end, listed at 235 pounds, but has a tall frame and great speed that help him get around offensive linemen. The Atlanta native has been named the Ivy League defensive player of the week twice this season.
Other nominees on the Buchanan Award Watch List are: defensive linemen Brad Daly of Montana State, Antoine Lewis of Villanova, Caraun Reid of Princeton, Robert Simpson of Mississippi Valley State, Davis Tull of Chattanooga and Colton Underwood of Illinois State; linebackers Quinn Backus of Coastal Carolina, Clarence Bumpus of Northern Colorado, Ronnie Hamlin of Eastern Washington, Grant Olson of North Dakota State, Stephon Robertson of James Madison, Alvin Scioneaux of Wofford, Tyler Starr of South Dakota and Jordan Tripp of Montana; defensive backs Stephen Godbolt III of Tennessee State, Jestin Love of Central Arkansas, Caleb Schaffitzel of Missouri State, Jaquiski Tartt of Samford and Marcus Williams of North Dakota State.
Bios of all 20 players can be found at http://tinyurl.com/yhv6oh8.
Other players considered for the Watch List: Chattanooga linebacker Wes Dothard; Gardner-Webb defensive end Shaquille Riddick; Samford linebacker Justin Shade; South Carolina State linebacker Joe Thomas; and Montana defensive end Zack Wagenmann.
The Buchanan Award Watch List can undergo revision during the season. Ballots will be sent to a national panel of sports information and media relations directors, broadcasters, writers and other dignitaries following the regular season. The winner will be invited to The Sports Network FCS Awards Presentation Dec. 16 in Philadelphia.
The Sports Network also presents the Walter Payton, Jerry Rice and Eddie Robinson Awards. The Payton Award honors the outstanding player in the FCS, the Rice Award goes to the FCS freshman of the year and the Robinson Award honors the FCS coach of the year. The top three vote-getters for the Payton Award as well as the winners of Rice and Robinson awards also will be invited to the national banquet.