Jerry Rice Award voting kicks off

Nov 24, 2014 - 3:53 PM Philadelphia, PA (SportsNetwork.com) - An impressive 11 different positions were represented among the 25 Jerry Rice Award finalists when voting began on Monday.

The Rice Award, now in its fourth season, and named for the legendary wide receiver who starred collegiately at Mississippi Valley State, honors the top first-year player on the FCS level of college football, whether a true freshman or a redshirt freshman.

A national panel of sports information and media relations directors, broadcasters, writers and other dignitaries select the Rice Award. The winner will be announced Dec. 15 at The Sports Network FCS Awards Banquet and Presentation.

The Rice Award has been a barometer for FCS greatness. The first three winners have been former Towson running back Terrance West (2011), now with the Cleveland Browns, and two 2014 Walter Payton Award finalists for FCS player of the year, Villanova quarterback John Robertson (2012) and Eastern Washington wide receiver Cooper Kupp (2013).

The Sports Network FCS Awards package is located at http://tinyurl.com/n5ysh8x.

The 2014 Jerry Rice Award finalists:

Arron Baker, Alcorn State, Running Back, 5-10, 235, Belle Glade, Florida

12 games: 101 carries, 682 yards, 6.6 ypc, 13 TD

Mike Basile, Monmouth, Safety, 6-1, 185, Brick, New Jersey

11 games: 78 TT, 59 Solo, 4 TFL, 1 SK, 4 INT, 5 PBU

De'Andre Brown, Abilene Christian, Running Back, 5-9, 190, Lewisville, Texas

10 games: 137 carries, 962 yards, 7.0 ypc, 9 TD; 12 receptions, 91 yards; 123.8 all-purpose ypg

Al Cobb, VMI, Quarterback, 6-3, 190, Pulaski, Tennessee

12 games: 269-for-438 (61.4 percent), 2,971 yards, 20 TD, 10 INT, 128.9 passing efficiency, 247.6 ypg; 56 carries, 124 yards, 2 TD

Chandler Curtis, Mercer, Wide Receiver/Return Specialist, 5-10, 186, Calhoun, Georgia

12 games: 5 carries, 92 yards, 1 TD; 28 receptions, 564 yards, 5 TD; 17 kick returns, 29.6-yard average, 1 TD; 11 punt returns, 24.6-yard average, 3 TD; 119.2 all-purpose ypg

Chase Edmonds, Fordham, Running Back/Kick Returner, 5-9, 185, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania

12 games: 252 carries, 1,539 yards, 6.1 ypc, 21 TD, 128.2 ypg; 15 receptions, 97 yards, 1 TD; 17 kick returns, 20.6-yard KO return average; 165.5 all-purpose ypg

Josh Gontarek, Albany, Wide Receiver/Return Specialist, 5-11, 170, Mt. Airy, Maryland

12 games: 58 receptions, 687 yards, 8 TD; 6 carries, 92 yards; 7 KO returns, 15.7-yard average; 76.6 all-purpose ypg

Christian Guzman, Houston Baptist, Punter, 5-9, 160, Brookshire, Texas

11 games: 67 punts, 44.1-yard average, 68 long, 4 TB, 5 FC, 14 I20, 23 50+

P.J. Hall, Sam Houston State, Defensive End, 6-1, 270, Seguin, Texas

12 games: 60 TT, 27 Solo, 19 TFL, 8 SK, 1 INT, 5 PBU, 2 QBH, 2 FF, 3 BLK

Austin Howard, Southern, Quarterback, 6-0, 190, Edgard, Louisiana

11 games: 139-for-272 (51.1 percent), 1,924 yards, 14 TD, 7 INT, 122.4 passing efficiency; 56 carries, 161 yards, 4 TD

Damond Jackson, Prairie View A&M, Safety, 6-0, 195, New Orleans

10 games: 80 TT, 36 Solo, 5.5 TFL, 0.5 SK, 1 INT, 5 PBU, 1 FR, 1 FF

Mario Jenkins, Idaho State, Linebacker, 6-1, 205, Nampa, Idaho

12 games: 120 TT, 48 Solo, 10.5 TFL, 2 SK, 3 INT, 4 PBU, 5 QBH, 1 FF, 1 FR

Alex Lakes, Mercer, Running Back, 5-10, 205, Newnan, Georgia

12 games: 200 carries, 1,107 yards, 5.5 ypc, 17 TD, 92.2 ypg; 4 receptions, 40 yards

Justin Lea, Jacksonville State, Right Tackle, 6-4, 275, Henagar, Alabama

Starter at right tackle for Gamecocks team that is ranked No. 5 nationally in rushing offense and No. 4 in total offense with only 14 sacks allowed in 11 games

Darius Leonard, South Carolina State, Linebacker, 6-3, 200, Lake View, South Carolina

11 games: 86 TT, 72 Solo, 14 TFL, 5 SK, 1 PBU, 5 QBH, 2 FR, 2 FF

Jimmy Moreland, James Madison, Cornerback, 5-10, 175, Royal Palm Beach, Florida

12 games: 43 TT, 27 Solo, 1.5 TFL, 3 INT, 10 PBU, 2 FR, 5 BLK

Troy Pelletier, Lehigh, Wide Receiver, 6-3, 190, Deerfield, New Hampshire

10 games: 49 receptions, 815 yards, 7 TD; 12 carries, 68 yards, 1 TD

Daniel Riddle, Western Carolina, Linebacker, 6-1, 225, Raleigh, North Carolina

12 games: 74 TT, 35 Solo, 5 TFL, 1.5 SK, 2 PBU, 1 QBH, 2 FF

Sam Schrader, Butler, Running Back, 5-10, 185, Mishawaka, Indiana

10 games: 74 carries, 604 yards, 8.2 ypg, 9 TD; 11 receptions, 157 yards, 2 TD; 81 all-purpose ypg

James Simms, Towson, Linebacker, 6-3, 190, Laurel, Maryland

11 games: 99 TT, 42 Solo, 7 TFL, 1 INT, 2 PBU, 3 QBH, 1 FF

Nathan Stone, Duquesne, Linebacker, 5-11, 234, Scottsdale, Pennsylvania

12 games: 100 TT, 53 Solo, 8 TFL, 3 SK, 3 PBU, 3 QBH, 1 FF

Lucas Webb, Chattanooga, Free Safety, 6-1, 190, Northport, Alabama

12 games: 53 TT, 35 Solo, 2.5 TFL, 5 INT, 1 PBU, 1 FR

Hunter Wells, Youngstown State, Quarterback, 6-5, 195, Navarre, Ohio

10 games: 121-for-202 (59.9 percent), 1,772 yards, 14 TD, 7 INT, 149.5 passing efficiency; 1 rushing TD

Jake Wieneke, South Dakota State, Wide Receiver, 6-4, 205, Maple Grove, Minnesota

12 games: 66 receptions, 1,318 yards, 15 TD, 20.0 ypc; 1 carry, 52 yards

Blaine Woodson, Delaware, Defensive Tackle, 6-2, 270, East Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania

12 games: 51 TT, 28 Solo, 11 TFL, 8.5 SK, 1 QBH, 1 BLK






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