University of Hawai’i running back Diocemy Saint Juste was named as a preseason candidate for the 2017 Doak Walker Award, announced by the PwC Athletic Forum. The award is presented annually to the nation’s top college running back.
Saint Juste, a senior from Boynton Beach, Fla., is one of only two Mountain West backs selected to the list along with Utah State’s Tonney Lindsey.
Last season, Saint Juste became just the ninth player in school history to surpass 1,000 yards, finishing the year with 1,006 yards and three touchdowns. He posted four 100-yard rushing games including a career-high 205 yards on 19 carries in a win over Nevada. Saint Juste also set a new UH bowl record by rushing for 170 yards on a career-high 25 carries in a Hawai’i Bowl win over Middle Tennessee.
The PwC SMU Athletic Forum Board of Directors will name ten semifinalists on Nov. 15. Three finalists, as voted on by the Doak Walker Award National Selection Committee, will be announced Nov. 20. The committee will cast a second vote beginning Nov. 26 to determine the recipient. The National Selection Committee consists of past recipients, former NFL All-Pro and college All-America running backs, media members and selected special representatives.
The recipient of the 2017 Doak Walker Award will be announced live on The Home Depot College Football Awards on Thursday, Dec. 7 on ESPN. The Doak Walker Award Presentation Banquet is scheduled for Feb. 16, 2018 in Dallas.
The award, which will name its 28th recipient in 2017, is named for SMU’s three-time All-America running back Doak Walker. It is the only major collegiate award that requires all candidates to be in good academic standing and on schedule to graduate within one year of other students of the same classification.
Four other UH players have been selected to preseason watch lists – Jahlani Tavai (Chuck Bednarik Award & Bronko Nagurski Trophy), Metuisela ‘Unga (Mackey Award), Asotui Eli(Rimington Trophy), and Noah Borden (Wuerffel Trophy).