Pre-season watch lists for post-season awards continue to be unfolded, and another UTEP football player earned some well garnered recognition.
One of the most improved UTEP football players on last year’s team was kicker Jay Mattox, and today Mattox was named to the prestigious Lou Groza Award Watch List for 2015.
Mattox is one of 30 kickers from around the nation to be named on the list, along with fellow C-USA kicker Trevor Moore from North Texas.
The junior-to-be made 43 of his 44 PAT attempts last season and was 13-of-16 on regular field goal tries which were both career highs.
He also assumed full kicking duties in the last seven games of 2014 including his rolling style punts which became a huge weapon for the UTEP defense, particularly in a road game against UTSA in where he also made his career long on field goals with a 47-yard boot in UTEP’s curb stomping of the Runners in 2014.
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.
UTEP opens the season September 5th in SEC country with an opening date against Arkansas.