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Banks, Eichenberg, Patterson Named to Outland Trophy Watch List

NOTRE DAME, Indiana — University of Notre Dame offensive linemen senior Aaron Banks, graduate student Liam Eichenberg and junior Jarrett Patterson have been selected to the 2020 Outland Trophy Watch List, honoring the nation’s top interior lineman. 

All three linemen started each game of 2019 at their respective positions, and the entire line was also named to the 2019 Joe Moore Award Midseason Watch List. As a group in 2019, the line helped the Irish rank 13th nationally in scoring offense and 11th in sacks allowed. 

Banks saw action in all games played in 2018 and 2019, starting 19 of the 26. He allowed just two sacks on 844 total snaps in 2019, and had his top PFF grade of the season in the Camping World Bowl victory over Iowa State (81.9 overall, 86.8 pass block). 

Eichenberg completed his second season of starting all 13 games in 2019, not conceding a sack on the year and allowing just three QB hits and nine hurries, while playing 845 snaps (496 pass plays). He posted the top pass-blocking grade (85.6) and run-blocking grade (78.8) on the team’s offensive line according to Pro Football Focus. In 2018, he allowed just three sacks on 939 snaps. 

Patterson made his first career start in the 2019 season opener, and started every matchup since at center. In 2019, he ranked among the nation’s top-20 centers per Pro Football Focus with an offensive grade of 74.2. Patterson did not allow a sack, and conceded just two QB hits on 854 offensive snaps played. 

About the Outland Trophy

The Outland Trophy winner is chosen from three finalists who are a part of the annual FWAA All-America Team. The FWAA All-America Committee, after voting input from the entire membership, selects a 26-man first team and eventually the three Outland finalists. Committee members, then by individual ballot, select the winner. Only interior linemen on offense or defense are eligible for the award; ends are not eligible.

The Outland Trophy, now in its 75th year, is the third-oldest major college football award. Created in 1946 when Dr. John Outland presented the FWAA with a financial contribution to initiate the award, the Outland Trophy has been given to the best interior lineman in college football ever since. Dr. Outland, an All-American at the University of Pennsylvania in the late 1890s, eventually took up practice in Kansas City, Mo. An avid outdoorsman, Dr. Outland believed linemen did not get the credit they deserved and wanted an award to recognize them.

About the National College Football Awards Association

The Outland Trophy is a member of the National College Football Awards Association (NCFAA), which encompasses the most prestigious awards in college football. Founded in 1997, the NCFAA and its 25 awards now boast over 800 recipients, dating to 1935. Visit to learn more about the association.

Following is the 2020 preseason watch list calendar:

Monday July 13: Chuck Bednarik Award (Kyle Hamilton, Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah) 

Tuesday July 14: Davey O’Brien Award (Ian Book)

Monday July 20: Butkus Award (Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah)

Tuesday July 21: Outland Trophy (Aaron Banks, Liam Eichenberg, Jarrett Patterson)

Tuesday, July 21: Nagurski Award (Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah, Drew White)

Wednesday July 22: Groza Award & Ray Guy Award

Thursday July 23: Hornung Award & Wuerffel Trophy

Friday July 24: Maxwell Award