Basil, Stoneburner Added to Preseason Watch Lists
By Brandon Castel
COLUMBUS, Ohio — Jake Stoneburner is still waiting reinstatement from Ohio State head coach Urban Meyer, but there’s a strong chance he will be back in the lineup at some point.
Photo by Dan Harker
The Nassau County Sports Commission certainly thinks so. The non-profit organization, which focuses on community-wide health education and sports recognition, name Stoneburner to its preseason watch list for the John Mackey Award.
Mackey was a five-time Pro Bowl tight end with the Baltimore Colts in the 1960’s, where he helped Johnny Unitas to a victory in Super Bowl V.
He was also a standout tight end at Syracuse before going on to a Hall-of-Fame career in the NFL. The award named in his honor has been given to the top tight end in college football since 2000, when it was awarded to Purdue’s Tim Stratton.
Big, fast and strong, and with outstanding pass-catching abilities, Stoneburner is a veteran of 36 games played and 15 starts at tight end. He enters his senior season with career totals of 37 receptions for 445 yards and nine touchdowns, including a team-high seven scores a year ago.
Stoneburner tied for the team lead last season with 14 receptions, half of which went for touchdowns, and he earned honorable mention all-Big Ten Conference honors by the league’s head coaches and media. His seven touchdown receptions ranked fourth nationally among tight ends. He caught 21 passes for 221 yards as a sophomore in 2010.
The 2012 John Mackey winner will be named on Dec. 6 during the Home Depot College Football Awards Red Carpet Show. Semifinalists will be announced Nov. 12 and the finalists will be named Nov. 19.
Florida tight end Aaron Hernandez won the award under Urban Meyer’s tutelage back in 2009.
Basil on Lou Groza Watch List
Photo by Dan Harker
Another Buckeye named to one of college football’s preseason watch lists Wednesday was OSU kicker Drew Basil. The junior out of Chillicothe was named to the initial watch list for the 2012 Lou Groza College Place-Kicker Award, which is presented by the Palm Beach County Sports Commission.
The award has been presented to the best kicker in college football since 1992, when it was first given to Memphis kicker Joe Allison. Ohio State has had one player win the award in its 20-year history, and that went to team MVP Mike Nugent during the 2004 season.
In his first full year as Ohio State’s place-kicker, Basil led the Big Ten Conference in 2011 by hitting on 84.2-percent of his field goal attempts (16-of-19)—a percentage that ranks fifth all-time at Ohio State.
His 16 field goals rank ninth in Buckeye history and his 12 consecutive made attempts at one point last year was the third-longest streak in school history. Basil enters the 2012 season having connected on 16 of his last 17 attempts. He has made all six of his attempts between the 40- and 49-yard lines during this run with his only miss from 50 yards.
Kicker’s statistics will be tabulated throughout the season and 20 semifinalists will be announced Monday, Nov. 5. From this list, a panel of more than 300 experts will select the top three finalists for the award by Monday, Nov. 19. The winner will be announced Thursday, Dec. 6 during the Home Depot ESPNU College Football Award Show.
Buckeyes on 2012 Preseason Watch Lists:
Lott IMPACT Award – Senior DL John Simon
Bednarik Award – John Simon and Junior DL Johnathan Hankins
Maxwell Trophy – Sophomore QB Braxton Miller
Mackey Award – Senior TE Jake Stoneburner
Lou Groza Award – Junior K Drew Basil
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