Everybody loves college football kickers! Well, cool people do, anyway. Today, punts and kicks were recognized by two of the profession’s most trusted name in boots – The Lou Groza Award (presented to the nation’s top place-kicker) and the Ray Guy Award (presented to the college punter of the year).
As is our sacred custom, we don’t care who’s nominated on the Power Five. They get enough ink! We concern ourselves with the plight and triumphs of the Forgotten. Let us commence to remember:
The Lou Groza Award
The Palm Beach Country Sports Commission (which, on the surface, sounds like a governing body for Jai Alai) has doled out the Groza since 1992. Last year’s winner: Zane Gonzalez of Arizona State. The last Forgotten to accept the trophy: the immortal Cairo Santos of Tulane in 2012.
Stevie Artigue, Louisiana
Jonathan Barnes, Louisiana Tech
John Baron II, San Diego State
Aaron Boumerhi, Temple
Bryce Crawford, San Jose State
Redford Jones, Tulsa
Kody Kroening, Fresno State
Canon Rooker, Middle Tennessee
Jason Sanders, New Mexico
Parker Shaunfield, Southern Miss
Skyler Simcox, WKU
Luke Strebel, Air Force
Matthew Wright, UCF
Louie Zervos, Ohio
Of the thirty Groza nominees, 14 hail from the mighty Group of Five, which doesn’t have a bad history with the award – the G5 has brought it to the house four times.
The Ray Guy Award
Punting excellence is judged by the Augusta Sports Council since 2000, and nobody screws with those guys. Ever. The last guy to win a Guy: Mitch Wishnowsky of Utah. The last Forgotten to bag the hardware: Tom Hornsey of Memphis in 2013.
Derek Adams, Kent State
Matt Bonadies, Middle Tennessee
Bailey Cate, Old Dominion
Jake Collins, WKU
Joseph Davidson, Bowling Green
Jonathan Hernandez, USF
Logan Laurent, Massachusetts
Spencer Smith, Memphis
Only 8 G5 punters make a list of 29, but the Group of Excellence has a solid Ray Guy history, once enjoying a three year stretch of victories (2011-2013).
Next Up, July 13: The Bronko Nagurski Trophy (Presented to the nation’s most outstanding defensive player) and The Outland Trophy (Presented to the nation’s most outstanding interior lineman)
Big boys getting the props tomorrow, yo.