King Named to Thorpe Award Watch List

IOWA CITY, Iowa — University of Iowa senior defensive back Desmond King has been named to the 2016 Jim Thorpe Award Watch List.  The announcement was made Monday by the Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame.  The Jim Thorpe Award is presented annually to the best defensive back in college football.
Highlighted by King, last year’s Thorpe Award Winner, this year’s watch list includes 39 of the nations best defensive backs.
King (5-foot-11, 200-pounds) started all 14 games at cornerback a year ago, tying the Iowa single-season record and ranking second in the country with eight interceptions, while recording 72 tackles and a team-high 13 pass breakups. He also handled the majority of punt returns and kickoff returns last season, averaging 14.2 yards on 17 punt returns and 24.4 yards on 29 kickoff returns.
The Detroit, Michigan, native was named a unanimous consensus All-American, a recipient of the Jim Thorpe Award, and a recipient of the Jack Tatum Award in 2015. In addition, King was named one of five finalists for the Walter Camp Player of the Year Award, named the Tatum-Woodson Big Ten Conference Defensive Back of the Year, and was voted first team All-Big Ten by Walter Camp, Associated Press, AFCA, FWAA, Sporting News, USA Today,,, Athlon Spots,, Phil Steele, and College Sports Madness.
Last week, King was named to the Bednarik Award Watch List and the Nagurski Trophy Watch List.  Athlon Sports listed King as a preseason first team All-America and All-Big Ten, preseason second team All-Big Ten (punt returns), and preseason third team All-Big Ten (kickoff returns).
The Thorpe Award Winner is selected from three finalists and will be announced at The Home Depot College Football Awards on Dec. 8, on ESPN. The Jim Thorpe Award Banquet will be held on Feb. 7, 2017, in Oklahoma.
Iowa opens the 2016 season at home on Sept. 3, hosting Miami (Ohio) inside Kinnick Stadium.  Tickets are available for purchase by contacting the UI Athletic Ticket Office at (800) IA-HAWKS and online at