LEXINGTON, Ky. – University of Kentucky senior linebacker Josh Allen has been named one of five finalists for the 2018 Walter Camp Football Foundation Player of the Year award, the fourth-oldest college football award in the nation.
Allen, a 6-foot-5, 260-pound linebacker from Montclair, New Jersey, is the only defensive player named a finalist. The others are quarterbacks Will Grier (West Virginia, senior), Kyler Murray (Oklahoma, junior), Gardner Minshew (Washington State, senior) and Tua Tagovailoa (Alabama, sophomore).
Allen has been a terror on defense the entire season as he leads the Southeastern Conference and ranks third nationally in sacks (14.0) and leads the league and ranks 11th nationally in tackles for loss (18.5). He also is tied for the NCAA lead in most forced fumbles (five).
Interesting Allen notes:
· Broke Kentucky single-season (14) and career records (28.5) for sacks
· 12 of his 14 sacks have come in the second half, including eight in the fourth quarter
· 11 career forced fumbles tie former Wildcat and current Chicago Bear linebacker Danny Trevathan for UK’s career mark (forced fumbles stats available since 1988)
· First-Team Mid-Season All-America by The Associated Press, ESPN.com, Pro Football Focus and The Athletic
· Three-time National Defensive Player of the Week
· Four times SEC Defensive Player of the Week this season, including two wins he clinched with a sack, fumble, and UK recovery on the final possession
· 84 total tackles, six QB hurries, four pass breakups and two fumble recoveries
· Current finalist for the Nagurski Trophy, Bednarik Award and Butkus Award
· Current semifinalist for the Lott IMPACT Trophy
The 2018 Walter Camp Player of the Year recipient, who is voted on by the 130 Football Bowl Subdivision head coaches and sports information directors, will be announced on Thursday, Dec. 6 during the 6 p.m. edition of ESPN SportsCenter.
The winner will then receive his trophy at the Foundation’s 52nd annual national awards banquet, presented by David McDermott Lexus of New Haven, on Saturday, Jan. 12, 2019 at Yale University’s Lanman Center.
Walter Camp, “The Father of American football,” first selected an All-America team in 1889. Camp – a former Yale University athlete and football coach – is also credited with developing play from scrimmage, set plays, the numerical assessment of goals and tries and the restriction of play to eleven men per side.
The Walter Camp Football Foundation– a New Haven-based all-volunteer group – was founded in 1967 to perpetuate the ideals of Camp and to continue the tradition of selecting annually an All-America team. The Foundation is a member of the National College Football Awards Association (NCFAA). The NCFAA was founded in 1997 as a coalition of the major collegiate football awards to protect, preserve and enhance the integrity, influence and prestige of the game’s predominant awards. The NCFAA encourages professionalism and the highest standards for the administration of its member awards and the selection of their candidates and recipients. For more information, visit the association’s website, www.ncfaa.org.