Cowser and Browning On CFPA Watch Lists

CEDAR CITY, Utah, Jun 10 – Southern Utah University’s James Cowser and Zak Browning have been named to the College Football Performance Awards watch lists at their respective positions, the CFPA has announced.

Cowser, a sophomore defensive end from Fruit Heights, Utah, was named to the defensive line watch list, while Browning, a sophomore inside linebacker from Camas, Wash., was named to the linebackers watch list.

Both players were freshmen all-Americans and finalists for the Jerry Rice Award last season. The Rice Award is presented to the outstanding freshman each year.

Cowser led the nation’s freshmen with 0.68 sacks per game and was second among freshmen with 1.23 tackles for loss per gamelast season. He paced the Thunderbirds and was fifth in the Big Sky in sacks with 7.5 and was tied for third in the BSC in tackles for loss with 13.5, numbers which ranked 25th and 27th in the nation. His 7.5 total sacks last season are the most ever by a freshman at SUU. Cowser finished the 2012 campaign with 61 total tackles, which was fifth on the squad and tops among defensive linemen.

"Congratulations to James Cowser on earning a spot on the 2013 CFPA Watch List," said CFPA Executive Director Brad Smith. "Cowser will be one of the top players to watch in the Big Sky Conference."

Browning, the Big Sky Conference’s 2012 Newcomer of the Year, was the top freshman tackler in the nation last season with 11.6 stops per game. He led the Thunderbirds and the Big Sky with 116 total tackles. His per-game average ranked second in the Big Sky and seventh in the nation, overall. He had seven games with 10 or more tackles, including an 18-tackle performance at Montana – the second-most in a game by an SUU freshman during its NCAA era – and 15-tackle tallies against Montana State and Eastern Washington.

"Congratulations to Zak Browning on earning a spot on the 2013 CFPA Watch List," said CFPA Executive Director Brad Smith. "Browning will be one of the top Big Sky Conference defenders to watch in 2013."

The inclusion of Cowser and Browning give SUU three players on the watch list. They join wide receiver Fatu Moala, who was announced earlier this spring.

Two SUU players have earned year-end honors from the CFPA in the last three seasons: San Diego Chargers draft selection Brad Sorensen (2012 CFPA Elite Quarterback Award) and Arizona Rattlers WR Tysson Poots (2010 CFPA Elite Wide Receiver Award).

-- SUU --