LSU says he's a guard, but Ethan Pocic still makes Rimington Trophy watch list for nation's best center _lowres

Advocate staff photo by BILL FEIG -- LSU center Ethan Pocic (77) waits to hike the ball as teammates LSU offensive tackle Vadal Alexander (74) and LSU running back Terrence Magee (18) watch during the second half at NRG Stadium in Houston. LSU won 28-24.

Ethan Pocic ended the spring penciled in as LSU’s starting left guard, but he made such an impression at center last season he’s regarded as one of the nation’s best at that position going into 2015.

Pocic was named Wednesday to the watch list for the Rimington Trophy, awarded annually to the nation’s best center.

Among those also selected were Louisiana Tech senior Kirby Wixson and South Alabama junior Joseph Scelfo, son of former Tulane coach Chris Scelfo.

Pocic started 12 games last season (missing the UL-Monroe game due to injury), nine at right guard and three at center. He ended the year starting at center against Notre Dame in the Music City Bowl in place of the injured Elliott Porter.

In all, Pocic played 743 snaps in 2014, on the field for every offensive play in the Tigers’ final five games. He finished third on the team with 72.5 knockdown blocks.

Pocic could still play center, but he finished spring practice expected to start at left guard. Sophomore Andy Dodd was listed as the starter at center.

Pocic joins three LSU teammates named to watch lists earlier this week.

Sophomore tailback Leonard Fournette was named to the Maxwell Award (best player) and Paul Hornung Award (best all-around athlete) watch lists. Senior safety Jalen Mills and junior middle linebacker Kendell Beckwith were named to the Bednarik Award (best defensive player) watch list.

The watch list for the John Mackey Award (best tight end) was also released Wednesday, but no LSU or Louisiana players were selected.

A string of major award watch lists, an early harbinger of the coming football season, continues through July 17. Thursday’s watch lists put the focus on special teams with the Lou Groza (place-kicker) and Ray Guy (punter) watch lists.

LSU WATCH LIST TRACKER

Paul Hornung Award (best all-around athlete): Leonard Fournette, RB

Maxwell Award (player of the year): Leonard Fournette, RB

Bednarik Award (defensive player of the year): Kendell Beckwith, LB; Jalen Mills, S

Rimington Trophy (best center): Ethan Pocic

2015 WATCH LIST RELEASE SCHEDULE

Monday: Paul Hornung Award (best all-around athlete)

Tuesday: Maxwell Award (player of the year), Bednarik Award (defensive player of the year)

Wednesday: John Mackey Award (best tight end), Rimington Trophy (best center)

Thursday: Lou Groza Award (best place-kicker), Ray Guy Award (best punter)

Friday: Bronko Nagurski Trophy (defensive player of the year), Outland Trophy (best interior lineman)

July 13: Jim Thorpe Award (best defensive back)

July 14: Butkus Award (best linebacker), Rotary Lombardi Award (lineman of the year)

July 15: Biletnikoff Award (best wide receiver), Wuerffel Trophy (community service, athletic and academic achievement)

July 16: Davey O’Brien Award (best quarterback), Doak Walker Award (best running back)

July 17: Walter Camp Award (player of the year)

NOTE: There is no watch list for the Heisman Trophy