DALLAS (FWAA) – Defensive back Israel Mukuamu made the first big play of South Carolina’s 20-17 overtime win at Georgia, then made two more for a career-high three interceptions as the Gamecocks stunned the nation’s third-ranked team. For an effort that included 11 tackles, Mukuamu has earned the Bronko Nagurski National Defensive Player of the Week honor for games of the weekend of Oct. 12, as selected by the Football Writers Association of America.

The sophomore from Bossier City, La., returned the first of his three interceptions 53 yards for a touchdown that gave South Carolina (3-3) a 17-10 lead in the second quarter. The interception was the first one thrown by Georgia quarterback Jake Fromm in 111 passes this season, and Mukuamu would get two more. Mukuamu grabbed his third interception that stopped Georgia’s first overtime possession to become the first Gamecock since 1988 to have three picks in a game.

Mukuamu is third on the team with 37 tackles while playing both corner and safety and his four interceptions lead the SEC.

Each Tuesday during the regular season, the FWAA has selected a Bronko Nagurski National Defensive Player of the Week since 2001. Mukuamu will be added to the Bronko Nagurski Trophy Watch List. The FWAA and the Charlotte Touchdown Club will announce five finalists for the 2019 Bronko Nagurski Trophy on Wed., Nov. 20. The winner will be chosen from those five finalists who are part of the 2019 FWAA All-America Team.

The FWAA All-America Committee, after voting input from the association’s entire membership, selects a 26-man All-America Team and eventually the Bronko Nagurski Trophy finalists. The committee members then select the winner as the best defensive player in college football.

The annual Bronko Nagurski Trophy Awards Banquet will be held on Monday, December 9th in Charlotte, NC. In addition to the 2019 Bronko Nagurski Trophy winner’s announcement, UCLA’s Jerry Robinson from the Class of 1978 will receive this year’s Bronko Nagurski Legends Award. The keynote address will be delivered by Ohio State head coach Ryan Day. The Charlotte Touchdown Club will also be presenting the Defender of the Nation Award to a defensive player from one of the Nation’s nine military academies and institutions sponsored by The Independence Fund.

The FWAA has chosen a National Defensive Player of the Year since 1993. In 1995, the FWAA named the award in honor of the legendary two-way player from the University of Minnesota. Nagurski dominated college football then became a star for professional football’s Chicago Bears in the 1930s. Bronislaw “Bronko” Nagurski is a charter member of both the College Football and Pro Football Halls of Fame.

Founded in 1941, the Football Writers Association of America consists of 1,400 men and women who cover college football. The membership includes journalists, broadcasters and publicists, as well as key executives in all the areas that involve the game. The FWAA works to govern areas that include game-day operations, major awards and its annual All-America team. For more information about the FWAA and its award programs, contact Steve Richardson at tiger@fwaa.com.

About the Charlotte Touchdown Club
The Charlotte Touchdown Club is a non-profit organization founded in 1990 for the purpose of promoting high school, collegiate, and professional football in the Charlotte, N.C., region. The club’s activities and services focus community attention on the outstanding citizenship, scholarship, sportsmanship, and leadership of area athletes and coaches. Since 1990, the club has raised more than $2 million to benefit area high school and collegiate athletics. For more information, contact John Rocco (704-347-2918 or jrocco@touchdownclub.mysites.io). The official website of the Charlotte Touchdown Club is touchdownclub.mysites.io.

2019 Bronko Nagurski National Defensive Players of the Week
• Weekend of Aug. 31: Alijah Halliburton, Wyoming
• Weekend of Sept. 7: Evan Weaver, Cal
• Weekend of Sept. 14: David Reese II, Florida
• Weekend of Sept. 21: Demetrius Taylor, Appalachian State
• Weekend of Sept. 28: Benny Walls, Temple
• Weekend of Oct. 5: Jordyn Brooks, Texas Tech
• Weekend of Oct. 12: Israel Mukuamu, South Carolina

Related link:
• Bronko Nagurski Trophy (All-Time Winners, Finalists and Players of the Week)