Penn State Football News: Three Named To Bednarik Award Watch List

By Danielle Daniels

Kalen King

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. – Penn State sophomore linebacker Abdul Carter, junior cornerback Kalen King and junior defensive end Chop Robinson were named to the Bednarik Award watch list on Monday.

The Bednarik Award is presented annually to the most outstanding defensive player in college football.

Abdul Carter · So. · LB · 6-3 · 250 · Philadelphia, Pa. · La Salle College HS

  • Also named to Bronko Nagurski Trophy, Butkus Award and Lott IMPACT Trophy watch lists.
  • Appeared in 13 games, making six starts, in 2022.
  • Earned All-Big Ten second team honors from the media and third team honors from the coaches.
  • Claimed a spot on the, Pro Football Focus, On3 and 247Sports’ True Freshman All-American Teams.
  • Tabbed an FWAA and College Football News Freshman All-American.
  • Was a finalist for the Maxwell Football Club’s Shaun Alexander Freshman of the Year Award.
  • Tallied 56 tackles with 10.5 tackles for loss and 6.5 sacks.
  • Is one of two Penn State freshmen to record 10+ tackles for loss and 6+ sacks in a season, joining Defensive Ends Coach Deion Barnes.
  • Is one of eight linebackers (10 occasions) to post 10+ tackles for loss and 6+ sacks in a season at Penn State and the first since Dan Connor (15 TFL, 6.5 sacks in 2007).
  • Finished fourth in the Big Ten in sacks (6.5), tied sixth in forced fumbles (2) and tied 11th in tackles for loss.
  • Led Big Ten freshmen in sacks, tackles for loss and forced fumbles (2).
  • Among FBS freshmen, was third in tackles for loss and tied for third in sacks.
  • Tied for team lead with six tackles at Auburn, while adding a forced fumble and a sack.
  • Led team with seven tackles against Maryland, adding a sack, a forced fumble, a pass breakup and two quarterback hurries.
  • Set career highs in tackles for loss (3) and sacks (2) against Michigan State.

Kalen King · Jr. · CB · 5-11 · 191 · Detroit, Mich. · Cass Tech

  • Also named to the Bronko Nagurski Trophy, Lott IMPACT Trophy and Jim Thorpe Award watch lists.
  • Has appeared in 26 career games, making 14 starts.
  • Was a second-team Al-American selection by the Walter Camp Football Foundation in 2022.
  • Selected third-team All-America by Pro Football Focus and honorable mention All-America by Phil Steele.
  • Earned third-team All-Big Ten honors from the coaches and media.
  • Garnered the team’s Keystone Award, sharing with linebacker Abdul Carter and center Juice Scruggs.
  • Collected 30 tackles, three tackles for loss, 18 pass breakups, three interceptions, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery in 2022.
  • Led the Big Ten in passes defended (21) and pass breakups (18), finishing third in the nation in both.
  • Tied for eighth in the Big Ten in interceptions (3).
  • Helped Penn State to a nation-best 85 pass breakups.
  • Held opponents to a 40% completion percentage (23-of-57) and a 26.2 passer rating when targeted.
  • Earned the coaching staff’s Defensive Player of the Week awards following the Central Michigan and Michigan State games.
  • Registered four pass breakups and forced and recovered a fumble against Central Michigan (9/24/22).
  • Tallied three pass breakups against Northwestern (10/1/22).
  • Secured first career interception in the third quarter at Indiana (11/5/22).
  • Broke up two passes against Maryland (11/12/22).
  • Set a career high with five pass breakups, and recorded an interception, against Michigan State (11/26/22).
  • Recorded an interception in the Rose Bowl Game against Utah (1/2/23).

Chop Robinson · Jr. · DE · 6-3 · 250 · Gaithersburg, Md. · Quince Orchard

  • Also named to the Bronko Nagurski Trophy watch list.
  • Has appeared in 25 games, making one start.
  • Selected honorable mention All-Big Ten by the coaches and media in 2022.
  • Named Pro Football Focus All-Big Ten second team.
  • Earned the team’s Reid Robinson Outstanding Defensive Lineman Award, sharing with Adisa Isaac.
  • According to Pro Football Focus, was the highest-rated edge rusher in the nation in 2022.
  • Posted 26 tackles, including 10 tackles for loss and 5.5 sacks, two pass breakups, a forced fumble, a fumble recovery and three quarterback hurries.
  • Named the coaching staff’s Defensive Player of the Week following the Ohio, Maryland and Utah games.
  • Finished tied for seventh in the Big Ten in sacks (5.5) and tied for 15th in tackles for loss (10).
  • Recorded a solo sack, forcing a fumble on the sack, and recovered a fumble at Auburn (9/17/22).
  • Tipped a pass at the line of scrimmage which was picked off and returned 47 yards for a touchdown by Curtis Jacobs at Michigan (10/15/22). Added five tackles and a tackle for loss.
  • Picked up two tackles for loss and a sack at Indiana (11/5/22).
  • Tallied three tackles, including a career-high two sacks, against Maryland (11/12/22).
  • Posted 1.5 sacks in the Rose Bowl Game against Utah (1/2/23).

The Bednarik Award has been presented to the College Defensive Player of the Year and is named in honor of Chuck Bednarik, who was an All-American player at the University of Pennsylvania and went on to be an All-Pro linebacker and center for the Philadelphia Eagles. He is a member of the College and Pro Football Hall of Fame as a full-time player on offense and defense.

The Chuck Bednarik Award will announce its semifinalists on November 13 and its three finalists will be unveiled on November 28. The winner of the 29th Bednarik Award will be announced on The Home Depot College Football Awards on Dec. 7. The formal presentation of the award will be made at the 87th Maxwell Football Club Awards Gala in Atlantic, City, N.J. in March 2024.