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Handicapping Ian Johnson's Walter Camp chances

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Boise State's Ian Johnson was named to the watch list for the Walter Camp award, which is given annually to the player of the year in college football..and sometimes Danny Wuerffel.

For Johnson, the nomination continues his impressive preseason that has already included being named the preseason WAC offensive player of the year and sitting a few rows away from us at a Carrie Underwood concert. He is without a doubt the national face of the Boise State team, and he is expected to take the team as far as they will go this season.

But will it be enough to take home the Walter Camp award? Our personal biases say yes. Even though Johnson came into last season with fairly high expectations only to fail them at the behest of his running style and internal organs, he seems like a different player this offseason. Maybe it's the fact that he's, like, 26 years old. Maybe it's the mohawk. Maybe it's the home-cooking of wife Chrissy and motivational interviews of Chris Myers. Whatever the case may be, we think that Johnson's chances of winning the Walter Camp award are very good.

To prove our point, we've broken down the other players on the Walter Camp watch list, splitting them into various categories. Provided the award committee uses these same guidelines, Johnson should be a shoo-in.

Players who probably should have graduated a couple years ago:
Rudy Carpenter, QB, Senior, Arizona State
P.J. Hill, RB, Junior, Wisconsin

Defensive players who are on the list simply to fill a quota:
Joe Burnett, DB, Senior, Central Florida
Sen’Derrick Marks, DT, Senior, Auburn
Alphonso Smith, DB, Senior, Wake Forest
Nick Reed, DL, Senior, Oregon
Ray Maualuga, LB, Senior, USC

Ball State players:
Nate Davis, QB, Junior, Ball State

Players with pictures of the Walter Camp committee in compromising positions:
Colt McCoy, QB, Junior, Texas
Rusty Smith, QB, Junior, Florida Atlantic
Marlon Lucky, RB, Senior, Nebraska
Dan LeFevour, QB, Junior, Central Michigan
LeSean McCoy, RB, Sophomore, Pittsburgh

Overrated WAC quarterbacks:
Tom Brandstater, QB, Senior, Fresno State

Players Brent Musburger has never heard of:
Scott McKillop, LB, Senior, Pittsburgh
Javon Ringer, RB, Senior, Michigan State
Jarett Dillard, WR, Senior, Rice

Players who peaked last season:
Arrelious Benn, WR, Sophomore, Illinois
C.J. Spiller, RB, Junior, Clemson
Todd Reesing, QB, Junior, Kansas

Players picked solely on name recognition:
Max Hall, QB, Junior, Brigham Young
Sam Bradford, QB, Sophomore, Oklahoma
Percy Harvin, WR, Junior, Florida
George Selvie, DE, Junior, South Florida

Players who are too super-human:
Tim Tebow, QB, Junior, Florida

Leftovers from last year:
Michael Crabtree, WR, Sophomore, Texas Tech
Chase Daniel, QB, Senior, Missouri
Pat White, QB, Senior, West Virginia

Tight ends who won't matter in two months:

Travis Beckum, TE, Senior, Wisconsin

Players who have lost the last two national championship games:
Malcolm Jenkins, DB, Senior, Ohio State
James Laurinaitis, LB, Senior, Ohio State

Running backs that grew up with Ian Johnson posters on their walls:
Knowshon Moreno, RB, Sophomore, Georgia
Chris Wells, RB, Junior, Ohio State
James Davis, RB, Senior, Clemson

Walter Camp watch list [WalterCamp.org]