The always-expansive Rimington Trophy watch list came out Wednesday, and eight Big Ten centers were included.
The trophy is presented annually to the top center in college football, with five Big Ten centers taking it home since 2000. The last to win was Michigan's David Molk in 2011.
Illinois center Joe Spencer landed on this year's preseason watch list. The senior has 26 career starts under his belt and started all 12 games at center last season.
Other Big Ten names on the Rimington list were Iowa's Sean Welsh, Maryland's Brendan Moore, Michigan's Mason Cole, Michigan State's Brian Allen, Nebraska's Dylan Utter, Ohio State's Pat Elflein and Wisconsin's Michael Deiter.
Elflein and Allen earned All-Big Ten honors as guards last season, with Elflein earning All-Big Ten First Team honors from both coaches and the media and Allen earning All-Big Ten Second Team honors from both groups.
Welsh and Cole earned All-Big Ten Honorable Mention honors from both coaches and media members last season, while Deiter earned All-Big Ten Honorable Mention honors from the media.