WEEK 4: Six Players Lead Teams to Victories to Earn Paul Hornung Award Honor Roll
Award Presented by Texas Roadhouse, Given to Nation’s Most Versatile Player
Louisville, Ky. – Sept. 27, 2022 – Six players hailing from schools located from the West Coast to the Gulf of Mexico and the Mid Atlantic earned the Paul Hornung Award Honor Roll for their performances in big wins this past weekend. Making the list are Trey Benson, Florida State; Kaelon Black, James Madison; Jordan Byrd, San Diego State; Nathaniel Dell, Houston; Will Shipley, Clemson; and Nohl Williams, UNLV.
The Paul Hornung Award presented by Texas Roadhouse, now in its 13th season, is given annually to the most versatile player in major college football by the Louisville Sports Commission. The Award pays tribute to the late football legend and Louisville native Paul Hornung. The winner and his family will be honored at the annual Paul Hornung Award dinner in downtown Louisville in March 2023.
College football fans nationwide have the opportunity to vote for their favorite player during the regular season and again during the bowl season. Online fan voting powered by Texas Roadhouse is now open HERE and factors into the selection of the finalists and winner.
Florida State sophomore RB / return specialist Trey Benson touched the ball rushing, receiving and returning kicks and scored two different ways in the Seminoles’ 44-14 home win over Boston College. Benson returned the opening kickoff 97 yards for a touchdown then ran 15 yards for what proved to be the winning score late in the first quarter. He closed out FSU’s scoring in the fourth quarter with a 36-yard run. Benson also accounted for six first downs.
James Madison freshman RB / return specialist Kaelon Black touched the ball 20 times three different ways and scored two different ways in the Dukes’ wild, 32-28 come-from-behind win at App State. With JMU trailing 28-3, Black hauled in a 23-yard scoring pass just before halftime and in the fourth quarter scampered four yards for the winning touchdown. He accounted for seven first downs from scrimmage and returned one kickoff 23 yards.
San Diego State senior RB / return specialist Jordan Byrd touched the ball 20 times three different ways and scored twice in the Aztecs’ 17-14, come-from-behind home win over Toledo. Byrd ran 42 yards for a touchdown in the first quarter, then ran one yard for the winning score with less than a minute to play. He returned two kickoffs for 45 yards, returned one punt and fair caught a punt, and accounted for four first downs rushing.
Houston WR / return specialist Nathaniel Dell touched the ball receiving, rushing and returning punts in the Cougars’ 34-27 home win over Rice. Dell had seven catches for 123 yards, including a 40-yard touchdown reception in the second quarter. He carried the ball one time, returned three punts 26 yards and accounted for four first downs receiving.
Clemson sophomore RB / return specialist Will Shipley touched the ball 24 times three different ways and scored once in the Tigers’ hard-fought, 51-45 double overtime win over Wake Forest on the road. Byrd played 65 snaps on offense, carried the ball 20 times for 104 yards and scored on a one-yard run in the second quarter. He had three receptions for 15 yards, returned a kickoff 24 yards and accounted for seven first downs from scrimmage.
UNLV junior DB / return specialist Nohl Williams played 76 snaps on defense, returned punts and kickoffs and intercepted two passes from his safety spot as the Rebels outlasted Utah State 34-24 on the road. Williams picked off a pass on the last play of the first half to snuff out a potential score and recorded an interception on the last play of the game. He returned two kickoffs for 42 yards, one punt for 12 yards and recorded three solo tackles.
The Louisville Sports Commission successfully launched the Paul Hornung Award in 2010 to honor its namesake and native son, and to promote outstanding performances by versatile college football players who often go unnoticed. Each week during the regular season, a panel of college football experts selects players for the Paul Hornung Award Honor Roll based on performance. A national selection committee comprised of 17 sports journalists and former NFL stars votes for the Hornung Award finalists and the winner, with fan voting powered by Texas Roadhouse comprising the 18th vote. Regional accounting firm Dean Dorton independently tabulates all votes.