CEDAR CITY, Utah, Oct. 3 - A pair of Southern Utah football players have been named to this year's Jerry Rice Award Watch List, The Sports Network announced today. True freshman Zak Browning and redshirt freshman Miles Killebrew made the watch list for the award which honors the top freshman at the NCAA Division I FCS level in the nation.
"I'm really happy for both Zak and Miles," SUU Coach Ed Lamb said. "Both young men have improved every week. They represent the future of SUU football."
Browning, a middle linebacker from Vancouver-area Camas, Wash. (Union HS), leads the Thunderbird defense with 45 tackles - including 26 solo stops - this season. He also has 1.5 tackles for loss, including a sack, has forced three fumbles and has broken up two passes in the four games. Last week he had a team-high 15 tackles against Montana State to lead the team and tie the second-highest tackles total by a freshman in SUU's NCAA Division I history. This season he has been among the team's top-five tacklers in four games, with the only miss the New Mexico Highlands game, which he sat out because of a minor injury.
Killebrew, a strong safety from Henderson, Nev. (Foothill HS) ranks second on the team with 43 tackles, 25 solo. He has been in on one tackle for loss, has broken up a pair of passes and has recovered one fumble, which he returned 49 yards for a touchdown against New Mexico Highlands. It is the sixth-longest fumble return in SUU history. He has been the team's leading tackler twice, at Cal and at Portland State. At PSU he had 15 tackles, the second-highest tackles total by a freshman in SUU's Division I era and the most since a 22-tackle effort by Steve Smith at Arkansas State in 2002. For his efforts at PSU, Killebrew was named national co-Player of the Week by The Sports Network.
Browning and Killebrew give SUU a player on the Rice Award Watch List for two straight seasons, as wide receiver Brady Measom earned the distinction last year, becoming the first Thunderbird to be so honored.
The complete award watch list is available using the following link: http://www.sportsnetwork.com/merge/tsnform.aspx?c=sportsnetwork&page=cfoot2/fcsawards/index.aspx
-- SUU --