Four Georgia football players were previously named in contention for national awards. You can now add Georgia’s Cameron Nizialek to the mix.
Nizialek is one of 10 semifinalists up for the Ray Guy Award, which goes to the best punter in the nation. Nizialek is spending his only season in Athens with the Bulldogs after transferring in from Columbia. He spent four years with the Lions, redshirting his first year before competing in the next three seasons. With the Ivy League not allowing for fifth-year players to participate, Nizialek transferred to Georgia.
A native of Chantilly, Virginia, Nizialek has posted an average of 44.4 yards per punt. His 42.4 net punting average ranks fifth in the nation. Nizialek has also landed 20 punts inside the 20-yard line.
Due to the combination of hang time and the punt coverage unit, only eight punts have been returned for a total of 40 yards. Nizialek has boomed 12 punts over 50 yards, which includes a long of 59. Only two pf his punts have gone for touchbacks.
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Joining Nizialek as semifinalists for the Ray Guy Award are Drue Chrisman (Ohio State), Joseph Davidson (Bowling Green), Michael Dickson (Texas), Cody Grace (Arkansas State), Corey Bojorquez (New Mexico), Corey Fatony (Missouri), Yannis Routsas (Texas-San Antonio), J.K. Scott (Alabama) and Mitch Wishnowsky (Utah).
A committee will narrow down this group to three finalists by Nov. 21. The winner will then be announced at the Home Depot College Football Awards Show on Dec. 7.
The Ray Guy Award has been in existence since 2000. Georgia has had one previous winner as Drew Butler received the honor in 2009.
On Wednesday, inside linebacker Roquan Smith was named a finalist for the Bronko Nagurski Award, which is given to the nation’s top defensive player. Smith is also a semifinalist for the Chuck Bednarik Award, which also goes to the nation’s top defender. Smith and outside linebacker Lorenzo Carter are semifinalists for the Dick Butkus Award, which is presented to college football’s best linebacker. Running back Nick Chubb is a semifinalist for the Maxwell Award, which goes to the best offensive player in the country. Rodrigo Blankenship is a semifinalist for the Lou Groza Award, which is handed to the best place-kicker in the nation.