South Carolina Gamecocks kicker Elliott Fry has been selected for the Lou Groza watch list. Fry was a fan favorite last year for his solid kicking all season combined with his game-winner against Missouri in a thriller. He also led the Gamecock scoring against Florida to help win that game. Fry was the first true freshman to kick in a season opener in more than 15 years last year, and went from being a walk-on to earning a scholarship. He set a Gamecock season record with 54 extra points, and ended up leading the Gamecocks in scoring with 99 points.
Kickers are selected for the Lou Groza watch list based on last year’s statistics and the 2014 expectations. There are 30 kickers selected from across the nation, including three from the SEC. The award is named for Lou “The Toe” Groza who played for the Cleveland Browns, who was also an offensive lineman but helped establish the need for place kickers as an actual position on the NFL teams. Last year’s winner was Robert Aguayo, a redshirt freshman from Florida State. He hit more than 90 extra points and led the nation with 147 points.
Also, Gamecock tight end Rory “Busta” Anderson was named to the Mackey Award watch list, which is the award for best tight end in the nation. Busta is a 6’5″, 227-pound senior who has played in 38 games over the past three seasons. At one point last season, he had a catch in nine consecutive games. He seems to always be there when the offense needs him the most and comes through in the clutch. He finished with 17 catches for 235 yards last year, but with no touchdowns even though he had scored eight times over the previous two seasons.
The John Mackey Award is given each year to the most outstanding collegiate tight end. John Mackey played in the NFL for 10 years, and was selected to the Pro Bowl five of those years. He was the first President of the NFL Players Association. Last year’s winner was Washington’s Austin Seferian-Jenkins, who had 33 receptions and 413 with seven touchdowns.