WALTER CAMP PLAYER OF THE YEAR: DEMETRIUS TAYLOR
BOONE, N.C. — App State’s Demetrius Taylor is one of just three FBS defensive ends on the watch list for the Walter Camp Football Foundation’s Player of the Year award.
The 35-player list includes a total of 10 defenders, with Taylor earning consideration thanks to his high-level production for the Mountaineers. He’s already made the preseason watch lists for the two most prestigious defensive player of the year awards: the Bronko Nagurski Trophy and the Bednarik Award
In his two seasons as a starter and first-team All-Sun Belt selection, Taylor has posted 84 tackles, 26.0 tackles for loss, 13.0 sacks, 16 quarterback hurries, five forced fumbles and nine passes defended (with one interception). His 19.5 career sacks rank fourth among active FBS players, and he has also totaled 35.5 tackles for loss in his career.
WUERFFEL TROPHY: THOMAS HENNIGAN
BOONE, N.C. — Recently named an Academic All-American, App State’s Thomas Hennigan has made the watch list for the Wuerffel Trophy, which is awarded to the FBS player who best combines exemplary community service with athletic and academic achievement.
Named after 1996 Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback Danny Wuerffel from Florida, the Wuerffel Trophy is known as “College Football’s Premier Award for Community Service” and is presented annually in Fort Walton Beach, Fla.
A two-time All-Sun Belt pick, Hennigan is returning for a super senior year as one of App State’s all-time leading receivers. He currently ranks fourth in catches (182), fourth in receiving yards (2,301) and fifth in touchdown catches (17) in the App State record books. He maintains a 3.53 GPA as a marketing (sales) major with a minor in finance and banking.
A starter in 51 of 52 games since stepping onto App State’s campus, Hennigan has helped lead the Mountaineers to a 42-10 record, three conference championships and four straight bowl victories.
During his time in Boone, Hennigan has volunteered time reading for local elementary school students as well as participating in school supply drives, canned food drives, Operation Christmas Child and Western Youth Network activities.
PAUL HORNUNG AWARD: CALEB SPURLIN
BOONE, N.C. — App State two-way talent Caleb Spurlin has been named to the watch list for the Paul Hornung Award, which is given annually to the most versatile FBS player in the country.
The Paul Hornung Award is presented by Texas Roadhouse and given by the Louisville Sports Commission in the memory of the late football legend and Louisville native Paul Hornung. The 2021 watch list includes 57 players.
Last season, Spurlin started all 12 games at defensive end, contributed at defensive tackle and emerged as a short-yardage fullback/H-back. He was the only FBS player in 2020 (and just the third since 2000) with at least 2.5 sacks and two receiving touchdowns in the same year.
Spurlin finished the 2020 season with 31 tackles, 4.0 tackles for loss, 2.5 sacks, three quarterback hurries and two forced fumbles. In addition to his receiving touchdowns, his backfield blocking created holes on three rushing touchdowns in 2020.
RAY GUY AWARD: XAVIER SUBOTSCH
BOONE, N.C. — App State punter Xavier Subotsch has been named to the watch list for the Ray Guy Award, which honors the nation’s top punter.
Last season, Subotsch’s net punting average of 40.3 yards (kick length minus return yardage) led full-time starters in the Sun Belt. Of his 36 punts, there were 12 fair catches and 11 kicks inside the 20, as opponents had only 39 punt return yards (on 18 attempts) with a long return of 11 yards all season.
App State ranked No. 11 nationally (and No. 1 the Sun Belt) by allowing 2.2 yards per punt return and No. 23 nationally (and No. 2 in the Sun Belt) by allowing 3.3 punt return yards per game.
A super senior from Australia, Subotsch has played in 52 career games, and his 26 punts inside the 20 during the 2019 season set a school record.