Pre-season acknowledgements continue to come for App State football players.

Cornerback Steven Jones Jr. has made the Maxwell Football Club's watch list for the Chuck Bednarik Award, which is presented annually to the outstanding defensive player in college football. Jones adds the Bednarik Watch List to his second-team preseason All-American nod from Walter Camp and making watch lists for the Nagurski Trophy (nation's top defender) and Jim Thorpe Award (nation's top defensive back). Last season, Jones tied for second place nationally and first in the Sun Belt last season with five interceptions.

Milan Tucker has been named to the watch list for the Paul Hornung Award, which is given annually to the most versatile FBS player in the country. Over the last two seasons, Tucker has returned kicks while spending time at both cornerback and wide receiver, depending on team needs. He has recorded three catches for 31 yards, nine tackles, seven kickoff returns for 149 yards, two rushes for 10 yards and a sprinting, diving recovery of a surprise onside kick that helped trigger a comeback in a 30-27 win against Coastal Carolina.

Tight end Miller Gibbs has been named to the watch list for the Wuerffel Trophy, which is awarded to the FBS player who best combines exemplary community service with leadership achievement on and off the field. The Wuerffel Trophy honors college football players who serve others, celebrate their positive impact on society and inspire greater service in the world. Gibbs, a management major with a GPA that exceeds 3.0, has appeared in 33 games over his first four seasons with the Mountaineers and totaled three touchdown receptions in the last two seasons.

The Mountaineers are picked to repeat as the East Division champion in the Sun Belt Conference's preseason polls, 10 of 14 first-place votes and a division-best 94 voting points.

Offensive tackle Cooper Hodges and running back Camerun Peoples made the preseason All-Sun Belt first team.

The offensive and defensive second teams include quarterback Chase Brice, offensive guard Damion Daley, running back Nate Noel, inside linebacker Trey Cobb, outside linebacker Nick Hampton and cornerback Steven Jones Jr.

The Mountaineers open the 2022 season at home hosting the North Carolina Tarheels, Saturday September 3 at 12 noon. You'll be able to hear the Mountaineers all season long on WATA, 1450 AM and 96.5 FM 

Tarheel fans can listen to the broadcast on the Tarheel Network on Classic Hits 100.7 and 99.1 FM.