The City and England forward is among six leading contenders up for this year’s award, which was won by Lewis Hamilton last year.
Sterling, who notched his 100th Premier League career goal at the weekend, has enjoyed another fine year both for club and country.
He played a key role as City won a third Premier League crown in four years and a fourth successive Carabao Cup.
On the international stage meanwhile, he was named in the Euro 2020 Team of the Tournament after leading England to their first major final for 55 years in the summer.
The 27-year-old is up against some stiff opposition for the public vote, with the winner announced at the ceremony to be held at Media City next Sunday evening.
Swimmer Tom Daley, boxer Tyson Fury, swimmer Adam Peaty, tennis star Emma Raducanu and Paralympian cyclist Dame Sarah Storey make up an impressive shortlist.
Voting will take place during the live event via the BBC’s online portal as well as votes made by phone.
Gary Lineker, Clare Balding, Gabby Logan and Alex Scott will present the 68th awards in Salford, which celebrates 12 months of sporting achievement.