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Virginia Tech football: Farley, Waller named to Thorpe Award watch list

Surprisingly, no Hokie was ever won the Jim Thorpe Award

NCAA Football: Virginia Tech at Miami
Virginia Tech CB Caleb Farley breaks up a pass in a 2019 win at Miami
Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

The Jim Thorpe Award released its watch list ahead of the 2020 season on Monday. The Thorpe Award, created in 1986, is given annually to the top defensive back in all of college football.

The Virginia Tech Hokies had two players make the cut.

Caleb Farley, the 6-foot-2 junior from Hickory, N.C., is not a surprise. Farley broke out in a major way in 2019, leading the ACC in passes defended and finishing second in interceptions. He was named first-team All-ACC after the season.

Jermaine Waller, a 6-foot-1, 180-pound junior from Washington, D.C., also had a breakout campaign in 2019. Unfortunately for Waller, he was a bit overshadowed by Farley. Waller was named honorable mention All-ACC last season.

The Hokies have quite a rich history of putting defensive backs in the NFL. However, no Virginia Tech player has ever won the Thorpe Award.

Could that change in 2020?

If we have a season this fall, Farley has a tremendous opportunity to become Tech’s first Thorpe winner.