11 July 2012
WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. – West Virginia University senior kicker Tyler Bitancurt is one of 30 collegiate kickers across the nation to be named to the Lou Groza Award Preseason Watch List.
Kickers on the Lou Groza Award Watch List were chosen based on statistics from the 2011 season and 2012 expectations. Ten conferences are represented among the 30 kickers, led by seven from the Big Ten. The SEC follows with six, along with four each from the ACC and the Pac-12. The Big 12, Conference USA and Sun Belt each placed two representatives, while the Big East, MAC and Mountain West each had a kicker recognized. While the Watch List highlights thirty of the best returning kickers in the country, the Groza Committee will be watching all FBS kickers during the season, and releasing a weekly “Stars of the Week” feature on www.lougrozaaward.com.
Accomplishments are tabulated throughout the season and the Lou Groza Collegiate Place-Kicker Award announces its 20 semifinalists on Monday, November 5th. From this list, a panel of more than 300 experts selects the top three finalists for the award by Monday, November 19th. That same group then selects the national winner, who will be announced on Thursday, December 6th during the Home Depot ESPNU College Football Award Show, broadcast live from Orlando, Fla.
The 21st Annual Lou Groza Collegiate Placekicker Award, presented by the Orange Bowl Committee, recognizes the three finalists during an early week celebration in Palm Beach County, culminating with a gala awards banquet on December 4th, prior to joining ESPN in Orlando.
The Award is named for National Football League Hall of Fame kicker Lou “The Toe” Groza, who played 21 seasons with the Cleveland Browns. Groza won four NFL championships with Cleveland and was named NFL Player of the Year in 1954. Although an All-Pro offensive lineman as well, Groza ushered in the notion that there should be a place on an NFL roster for a kicker.
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