Clemson center Sean Pollard and Coastal Carolina center Trey Carter were each placed on the watch list for the Rimington Trophy on Friday which goes to the best center in the country while the Chanticleers Isaiah Likely was named to the 2019 John Mackey Award preseason watch list, the Friends of John Mackey announced on Friday. The award is given annually to the most outstanding collegiate tight end.
A 2019 Phil Steele Preseason Sun Belt All-Conference fourth team selection, Likely play in all 12 games as a true freshman in 2018. The first-year Chant finished the season tied for the team lead with five touchdown receptions on the year, coming on strong at the end of the year by hauling in nine passes for 57 yards and four touchdowns over the last three games. The Massachusetts native, caught 12 passes for 106 yards and averaged 8.8 yards per catch, which included a 29-yard touchdown reception in the fourth quarter in the win at Louisiana (Sept. 22), four receptions for 13 yards and a touchdown versus Arkansas State (Nov. 10) and four catches for 13 yards and two touchdowns against Georgia Southern. He also grabbed one pass for a season-long 31 yards and a touchdown at South Alabama (Nov. 23).
The award recipient is selected by vote of the John Mackey Award selection committee with the winner scheduled to be announced on December 11, 2019, and then presented the award live at The Home Depot College Football Awards Red Carpet Show on ESPNU on December 12. All future announcements can be found at www.johnmackeyaward.com.
NFL Hall of Fame member John Mackey is considered to be the best to have played the tight end position. A tight end by whom all others are measured, Mackey was a role model on and off the field as demonstrated by his Super Bowl Championship, his commitment to the community and his place in history as the first President of the NFLPA.
Pollard, going into his senior season, helped Clemson win a National Championship last season and was 2nd team All-ACC
The Rimington Trophy is presented annually to the most outstanding center in NCAA Division I College Football. Since its inception, the award has raised over $4.2 million for the Boomer Esiason Foundation, which is committed to finding a cure for cystic fibrosis.
Both a 2019 Phil Steele and Athlon Sports preseason All-Sun Belt fourth team selection, Carter has started 24-straight games entering the 2019 season. Named All-Sun Belt honorable mention in each of the last two years (2017 and 2018), the Alabama native played in and started all 12 games at center for the Chants. He was a vital part of the offensive unit up front that led the CCU rushing attack to rank fourth in the Sun Belt and 41st nationally with an average of 198.7 rushing yards per game and helped to lead the way for the Chants offense to total 574 offensive yards in the win at Campbell (Sept. 12), the most for a CCU offense in a single game since 2015.
Carter, who graded out as the top offensive lineman in 10 of the 12 games 2018, recorded a season-high 15 takedown blocks in the road win at UMass (Oct. 20) and 14 knockdown blocks in the road win at Louisiana (Sept. 22) and the following week on the road at Troy (Sept. 29).
While more than a dozen All-America teams are selected annually, the Rimington Trophy committee uses these three prestigious teams to determine a winner:
- Walter Camp Foundation (WCF)
- Sporting News (SN)
- Football Writers Association of America (FWAA)
Because the selectors of these three All-America teams can place centers in a "mix" of offensive linemen that includes guards and tackles, their 11-man first teams can often have two centers. The Rimington Trophy committee's policy is to count all players that play primarily the center position for their respective teams as centers, even though they may be listed as guards or tackles on the All- America teams.