CHARLOTTE, N.C. – University of Kentucky senior linebacker Josh Allen has been named the winner of the Bronko Nagurski Trophy awarded to the nation’s top defensive player, it was announced at tonight’s awards banquet in Charlotte by the Charlotte Touchdown Club.
Allen, a senior from Montclair, New Jersey, has been a pass rush terror so far this season. With 28.5 career sacks and 14 sacks in 2018, he now holds UK’s career and single-season records. His 11 career forced fumbles tie former Wildcat and current Chicago Bear linebacker Danny Trevathan for UK’s career mark (forced fumbles stats available since 1988). He leads the team with 84 tackles and paces the Southeastern Conference in sacks, tackles for loss (18.5) and forced fumbles (5).
Allen is UK’s first Nagurski Award winner and the SEC’s fourth, joining Georgia’s Champ Bailey (1998), LSU’s Glenn Dorsey (2007) and Alabama’s Jonathan Allen (2016).
Earlier today, Allen was named the SEC Defensive Player of the Year and was a unanimous All-SEC first-team selection by the Associated Press. He also is a finalist for five other major awards: the Walter Camp National Player of the Year, the Butkus Award (nation’s best linebacker), the Chuck Bednarik Award (defensive player of the year), Lott IMPACT Trophy (defensive player of the year) and Ted Hendricks Award (defensive end of the year).