The three finalists for 2014 Experience Defensive Freshman of the year are: SS Willie Taylor -- The true freshman was a 4-star recruit for the Tide. Taylor comes into the season rated 74 overall with very good acceleration and hitting power to go along with his coverage skills. He is making good use of those skills and has made an impact for the Tide. SEASON STATS: 36 Tackles | 26 Solo | 1 TFL | 3 Pass Def | 3 INT | 1 Def TD | 1 FR CB Phillip Cummings -- Cummings has been as advertised on Signing Day, as Coach Dakota proclaimed his a "shutdown" corner from Day One. The 4-star recruit from ID tremendous speed and acceleration to make up for any inexperience and developing coverage skills. SEASON STATS: 50 Tackles | 36 Solo | 10 Pass Def | 2 INT | 2 FF FS Jason Scott -- The Jackets have struggled early on in '14 but a bright spot for first year HCGowazzucougs has been the play of Scott who is third on the team in tackles. His skills are developing as he will need to continue to grow into a leadership role for the rebuilding efforts in Atlanta. SEASON STATS: 60 Tackles | 42 Solo | 3 TFL | 1 INT | 1 SAFETY LB Fred Merritt -- The 4-star recruit from Maryland also has 4 tackles for a loss this year. With his explosive acceleration and ability to shed blocking he will be a handful for Big Ten offenses the rest of his career. Tied for fourth in the Big Ten in sacks and tied for third in forced fumbles. SEASON STATS: 47 tackles | 35 Solo | 9 TFL | 8 Sacks | 3 Forced Fumble | 1 Pass Def FS Jonathan Ward -- The Nittany Lions have a huge vistory under their belt this season over the Buckeyes and Ward recorded four in that contest. When he was pegged as a Day One starter by recruiting analysts, everyone agreed he has was a hitter with solid tackling ability but the questions came up about his coverage skills. SEASON STATS: 44 Tackles | 34 Solo | 4 TFL | 2 INT | 5 PD | 1 FF | 1 FR Player with the most first place votes wins. Polls close at the start of the Offseason night Wednesday.