Bronko Nagurski Trophy

FWAA Bronko Nagurski Trophy

Presented to the National Defensive Player of the Year.

The FWAA All-America Committee, after voting input from the association’s full membership, selects a 26-man All-America Team and eventually the Nagurski Trophy finalists. The Bronko Nagurski Trophy winner will be chosen from the five finalists named in November. Committee members, by individual ballot, select the winner they regard as the best defensive player in college football.

The FWAA has chosen a National Defensive Player of the Year since 1993. In 1995, the FWAA named the award in honor of the legendary two-way player from the University of Minnesota. Nagurski dominated college football, then became a star for professional football’s Chicago Bears in the 1930s. Bronislaw "Bronko" Nagurski is a charter member of both the College Football and Pro Football Halls of Fame.

The Bronko Nagurski Trophy is a member of the National College Football Awards Association (NCFAA), which encompasses college football’s most prestigious awards. The NCFAA’s 25 awards have honored more than 800 recipients since 1935. Visit for more information.



1993    Rob Waldrop, Arizona
1994    Warren Sapp, Miami
1995    Pat Fitzgerald, Northwestern
1996    Pat Fitzgerald, Northwestern
1997    Charles Woodson, Michigan
1998    Champ Bailey, Georgia
1999    Corey Moore, Virginia Tech
2000    Dan Morgan, Miami
2001    Roy Williams, Oklahoma
2002    Terrell Suggs, Arizona State
2003    Derrick Strait, Oklahoma
2004    Derrick Johnson, Texas
2005    Elvis Dumervil, Louisville
2006    James Laurinaitis, Ohio State
2007    Glenn Dorsey, LSU
2008    Brian Orakpo, Texas
2009    Ndamukong Suh, Nebraska
2010    Da’Quan Bowers, Clemson
2011    Luke Kuechly, Boston College
2012    Manti Te’o, Notre Dame
2013    Aaron Donald, Pitt
2014    Scooby Wright III, Arizona
2015    Tyler Matakevich, Temple
2016    Jonathan Allen, Alabama
2017    Bradley Chubb, N.C. State
2018    Josh Allen, Kentucky
2019    Chase Young, Ohio State
2020    Zaven Collins, Tulsa 
2021    Will Anderson Jr., Alabama