Palm Beach County Sports Commission Presents

Lou Groza Collegiate Place-Kicker Award

Palm Beach Sports

Watch List


          Lou Groza Collegiate Place-Kicker Award Announces 2015 Preseason Watch List
WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. – Looking to become just the second repeat winner in Groza history, Maryland senior Brad Craddock headlines the thirty-player Watch List for the 2015 Lou Groza Collegiate Place-Kicker Award, as announced by the Palm Beach County Sports Commission.

Craddock won the 2014 Groza on an incredible year in which he stayed perfect until his final attempt of the regular season, finishing with the Maryland school records for accuracy (94.7%), longest field goal (57 yards) and most consecutive made field goals (24). But if he is to join former Florida State kicker Sebastian Janikowski, who won the award in 1998 and 1999, as the only two-time Groza winners, he’ll have to hold off an impressive batch of returning kickers, including both of his fellow finalists last season.

Joining Craddock on the Watch List are Florida State junior Roberto Aguayo and West Virginia junior Josh Lambert, both finalists for the Groza in 2014. Aguayo, who won the award as a freshman in 2013, leads the nation in field goals over the past two seasons, while Lambert last year became just the third kicker in FBS history to make 30 field goals in a single campaign.

The three former finalists are joined on the Watch List by a dozen other kickers who were named semifinalists last season, as well as by 15 new faces. Only five returning FBS kickers attempted at least 10 kicks and made at least 90% of them, and all are on the Watch List: Craddock (94.7), Kansas State sophomore Matthew McCrane (94.7), Oregon sophomore Aidan Schneider (91.7), two-time semifinalist Duke senior Ross Martin (90.5) and Aguayo (90.0). 

The Watch List also includes all ten returning kickers who made more than 20 field goals at a rate of 75% or higher: Lambert (30), Aguayo (27), two-time semifinalist Utah junior Andy Phillips (23), Bowling Green senior Tyler Tate (23), returning semifinalist Virginia senior Ian Frye (22), two-time semifinalist Arizona State junior Zane Gonzalez (22), Oklahoma State junior Ben Grogan (22), two-time semifinalist TCU senior Jaden Oberkrom (22), and returning semifinalist Clemson senior Ammon Lakip (21).

Kickers on the Lou Groza Award Watch List were chosen based on statistics from the 2014 season and 2015 expectations. All ten FBS conferences are represented among the 30 kickers, led by the ACC with six, the Pac-12 with five, and the Big 12 with four. The Big Ten, MAC and SEC each placed three kickers, followed by a pair each from the American and Conference USA. The Mountain West and the Sun Belt each placed one kicker.

While the Watch List highlights thirty of the best returning kickers in the country, all FBS kickers are eligible for this year’s award. In fact, two of the past three winners were not on that year’s Watch List. The Groza Committee will be watching all FBS kickers during the season, and releasing a weekly “Stars of the Week” feature on 
Semifinalists for the Lou Groza Award will be announced November 5, 2015, while the three finalists will be unveiled November 23, 2015. The winner of the 2015 Lou Groza Award will be announced as part of the Home Depot College Football Awards Show held on December 10, 2015. 

The 24th Annual Lou Groza Collegiate Place-Kicker Award, presented by the Orange Bowl Committee, recognizes the three finalists during an early week celebration in Palm Beach County, culminating with a gala awards banquet at the Palm Beach County Convention Center on December 7th, 2015, prior to joining ESPN in Atlanta. 

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.

For more information on the Lou Groza Collegiate Place-Kicker Award and to see the “Stars of the Week” throughout the season, please go to For even more updates on the best kicking performances throughout the season, follow @LouGrozaAward on Twitter.
The Lou Groza Award is a member of the National College Football Awards Association (NCFAA) which encompasses the most prestigious awards in college football. The 22 awards boast over 700 years of tradition-selection excellence. Visit to learn more about our story.

Beginning in 2015, The Home Depot College Football Awards will have a new home at the College Football Hall of Fame and Chick-fil-A Fan Experience in downtown Atlanta. Airing live on ESPN on December 10, 2015, college football's brightest stars will be honored for their performance on and off the field.

The members of the NCFAA are unveiling their preseason watch lists over a 12-day period this month. Sixteen of the association's 22 awards select a preseason watch list and the NCFAA has spearheaded a coordinated effort to promote each award's preseason candidates. Following is the complete 2015 preseason watch list calendar:

Tues., July 7:    Bednarik Award / Maxwell Award
Wed., July 8:    Mackey Award / Rimington Trophy
Thurs., July 9:    Lou Groza Award / Ray Guy Award
Fri., July 10:    Bronko Nagurski Trophy / Outland Trophy
Mon., July 13:    Jim Thorpe Award
Tues., July 14:    Butkus Award / Rotary Lombardi Award
Wed., July 15:    Biletnikoff Award / Wuerffel Trophy
Thurs, July 16:    Davey O'Brien Award / Doak Walker Award 
Fril., July 17:    Walter Camp Award


About the Palm Beach County Sports Commission
The Palm Beach County Sports Commission is a private, not-for-profit organization contracted by Palm Beach County to promote and market the County as a sports and sports tourism destination. The Commission brings sporting events and activities to the County, enhances economic impact, stimulates bed tax revenues (primarily in the off-season), and maximizes utilization of County facilities. The Commission offers a full range of event service support, corporate partnerships, sponsorships and a local membership program that support its goals. Local, regional, national and international marketing efforts are ongoing by the Commission with sports organizations and event owners. The Commission also produces sports-related programs for the residents of Palm Beach County including the annual Lou Groza Award program, the Palm Beach County Sports Hall of Fame, the Kids Fitness Festival of the Palm Beaches and the annual Sam Budnyk Student-Athlete Scholarship. For more information on the Palm Beach County Sports Commission, go to 


2015 Lou Groza Award Watch List
in alphabetical order

Roberto Aguayo – Florida State
Class: Junior - Hometown: Mascotte, Florida
FGM    FGA    FG%    1-19    20-29    30-39    40-49    50+    LONG    XPM    XPA    PTS
27    30    90.0    0-0    9-9    9-9    6-8    3-4    53    55    55    136
A finalist in 2014 and the winner of the 2013 Lou Groza Award, Aguayo enters the year needing just two more field goals to qualify as the most accurate career kicker in FBS history, having made 197 of his 201 total kicks, an astounding 98%. His 27 field goals ranked second in the nation last year, and he was the only kicker with at least 20 to maintain a 90% accuracy rate. His 48 field goals over the past two seasons are the most in FBS.

Kyle Bullard – Houston
Class: Senior - Hometown: Boerne, Texas
FGM    FGA    FG%    1-19    20-29    30-39    40-49    50+    LONG    XPM    XPA    PTS
16    22    72.7    0-0    3-3    7-12    5-6    1-1    51    42    47    90
A 2014 Groza semifinalist, Bullard made the first 12 field goals he attempted last season, giving him a streak of 18 straight that tops the Houston record books. The record-setting kick came at the end of a 4-for-4 performance in which Bullard scored all 12 of Houston’s points against UCF, including a career-long 51 yard field goal. 

Brad Craddock – Maryland
Class: Senior - Hometown: Adelaide, Australia
FGM    FGA    FG%    1-19    20-29    30-39    40-49    50+    LONG    XPM    XPA    PTS
18    19    94.7    0-0    3-3    4-4    9-9    2-3    57    44    44    98
The 2014 Lou Groza Award winner and a semifinalist in 2013, Craddock was practically perfect in Maryland’s first Big Ten season. His 94.7% FG rate, 57-yard kick against Ohio State, and streak of 24 straight field goals are all school records. He made 11 kicks from at least 40 yards, including a game-winner over Penn State. Craddock looks to become just the second Lou Groza Award winner to repeat the honor. 

Ka’imi Fairbairn – UCLA
Class: Senior - Hometown: Kailua, Hawaii
FGM    FGA    FG%    1-19    20-29    30-39    40-49    50+    LONG    XPM    XPA    PTS
18    22    81.8    0-0    8-8    6-7    4-6    0-1    47    47    48    101
With a 2-FG, 10-point performance in UCLA’s 40-35 Alamo Bowl win over Kansas State, Fairbairn got to 101 points on the season, making him the first Bruins player with three straight seasons going over the century mark. He has made 29 straight attempts from 35 yards and closer. His 3-for-3 performance at Cal included the winning score in a 36-34 victory. 

Elliott Fry – South Carolina
Class: Junior - Hometown: Frisco, Texas
FGM    FGA    FG%    1-19    20-29    30-39    40-49    50+    LONG    XPM    XPA    PTS
18    25    72.0    0-0    5-5    6-7    7-10    0-3    47    51    51    105
A 2014 Groza semifinalist, Fry enters the year having made 99 straight extra points, already a South Carolina record. His 4-for-4 FG performance in a 33-23 win over East Carolina earned him Star of the Week honors. His 105 points were the third-highest single-season mark in school history. 

Ian Frye – Virginia
Class: Senior - Hometown: Bristol, Virginia
FGM    FGA    FG%    1-19    20-29    30-39    40-49    50+    LONG    XPM    XPA    PTS
22    27    81.5    1-1    10-10    6-6    5-7    0-3    47    34    35    100
A 2014 Groza semifinalist, Frye’s 22 field goals tied him for sixth in FBS, with all five of his missed attempts coming from 46 yards or further. He followed up a 3-for-3 performance in which his 42-yarder knocked off Louisville 23-21 with a career-best 4-for-4 game against BYU. His 100 points are the sixth most in Virginia history.  

Rafaell Gaglianone – Wisconsin
Class: Sophomore - Hometown: Sao Paulo, Brazil
FGM    FGA    FG%    1-19    20-29    30-39    40-49    50+    LONG    XPM    XPA    PTS
19    22    86.4    1-1    9-9    4-5    3-4    2-3    51    59    61    116
Stepping in as a true freshman, Gaglianone booted a 51 yarder against LSU on his first collegiate attempt, and things just got better from there. After just one season, he’s already 10th on the Wisconsin career FG charts. With the game-tying and OT-winning kicks in the Outback Bowl, he ended the year on a streak of 14 straight, matching the Badgers record.

Andrew Gantz – Cincinnati
Class: Sophomore - Hometown: Dayton, Ohio
FGM    FGA    FG%    1-19    20-29    30-39    40-49    50+    LONG    XPM    XPA    PTS
16    20    80.0    0-0    5-5    6-7    5-7    0-1    47    52    54    100
A 2014 Groza semifinalist, Gantz was one of just two freshman to earn the honor last season. He led all Bearcats in scoring, and his 100-point season is just the fifth time a Cincinnati kicker has hit triple digits in 127 years. He posted double-digit scoring efforts in six games, and posted his first 3-for-3 field goal performance as well.

Zane Gonzalez – Arizona State
Class: Junior - Hometown: Deer Park, Texas
FGM    FGA    FG%    1-19    20-29    30-39    40-49    50+    LONG    XPM    XPA    PTS
22    27    81.5    0-0    9-9    7-8    6-9    0-1    49    50    52    116
A Groza semifinalist in both 2014 and 2013, Gonzalez is tied for the second most field goals over the past two seasons. Following up on his FBS freshman record-tying 25 makes, as a sophomore he finished tied for sixth in the nation with 22 field goals. He had a pair of 4-FG games, including the tying and winning kicks in a 19-16 overtime victory over Utah.

Paul Griggs – Purdue
Class: Senior - Hometown: Charlotte, North Carolina
FGM    FGA    FG%    1-19    20-29    30-39    40-49    50+    LONG    XPM    XPA    PTS
16    20    80.0    0-0    6-6    3-3    4-8    3-3    53    32    33    80
Griggs entered the year with a career-long field goal of 47 yards, but he ended up one of the nation’s most successful kickers from long distance. In fact, he was the only FBS kicker to be perfect on three or more attempts from 50 yards. Two of those came in a 3-for-3 performance against Wisconsin, the first time in Purdue history a kicker made two from deep.

Ben Grogan – Oklahoma State
Class: Junior - Hometown: Arlington, Texas
FGM    FGA    FG%    1-19    20-29    30-39    40-49    50+    LONG    XPM    XPA    PTS
22    28    78.6    1-1    7-8    9-11    5-7    0-1    47    41    41    107
A 2014 Groza semifinalist, Grogan overcame a rough start to the season to finish strong. After missing three of his first five attempts, he went 20-for-23 the rest of the way, including a trio of 3-for-3 performances. Then in their annual Bedlam rivalry game, it was Grogan’s field goal that gave the Cowboys a 38-35 overtime win over Oklahoma. 

Donny Hageman – San Diego State
Class: Senior - Hometown: Covina, California
FGM    FGA    FG%    1-19    20-29    30-39    40-49    50+    LONG    XPM    XPA    PTS
20    25    80.0    0-0    7-8    7-10    6-7    0-0    49    37    37    97
Joining the Aztecs after two years at Mt. San Antonio College, Donny Hageman began the season as a relative unknown, but he enters 2015 as one of just seven returning FBS kickers who made at least 20 field goals with at least 80% accuracy. He hit three field goals in three of the final four games of the year, with his 20 FGs setting an SDSU single-season record. 

Andrew Haldeman – Western Michigan
Class: Senior - Hometown: Ferndale, Michigan
FGM    FGA    FG%    1-19    20-29    30-39    40-49    50+    LONG    XPM    XPA    PTS
14    17    82.4    2-2    7-10    4-4    1-1    0-0    44    51    56    93
A starter since his first game as a freshman, Haldeman enters 2015 with the chance to finish his career atop the Western Michigan record books. With another 14 field goal season, he’ll match the school record for career makes. If he can notch his first 100-point season, he’ll become the Broncos career scoring leader. 

Ammon Lakip – Clemson
Class: Senior - Hometown: Johns Creek, Georgia
FGM    FGA    FG%    1-19    20-29    30-39    40-49    50+    LONG    XPM    XPA    PTS
21    28    75.0    1-1    7-8    7-9    6-10    0-0    49    43    44    106
A 2014 Groza semifinalist, Lakip stepped up after longtime Clemson kicker Chandler Catanzaro graduated to the NFL. In his first season as the starter, Lakip matched the Tigers record with eight multiple-field-goal games, including a trio of 3-for-3 performances. He had seven games with double-digit points, including 10 on his own in a 16-6 win over Syracuse.

Josh Lambert – West Virginia
Class: Junior - Hometown: Garland, Texas
FGM    FGA    FG%    1-19    20-29    30-39    40-49    50+    LONG    XPM    XPA    PTS
30    39    76.9    1-1    7-7    6-7    12-19    4-5    55    45    45    135
A finalist for the 2014 Groza, Lambert led all FBS kickers with 30 field goals, becoming just the third kicker to ever make that many in one season and the first since 2009. He didn’t pad his numbers either; his 16 field goals from at least 40 yards are an FBS record and he was the only kicker last season to connect four times from at least 50 yards out.

Austin MacGinnis – Kentucky
Class: Sophomore - Hometown: Wedowee, Alabama
FGM    FGA    FG%    1-19    20-29    30-39    40-49    50+    LONG    XPM    XPA    PTS
21    27    77.8    0-0    4-5    9-10    5-7    3-5    54    41    41    104
A record-breaking freshman season has to have Kentucky fans excited about Austin MacGinnis. He set new school marks for single-season scoring, field goals, and touchbacks. Despite his young leg, he first matched the Kentucky record with a 53-yard field goal against Ohio, and then broke it from 54 against Tennessee. 

Ross Martin – Duke
Class: Senior - Hometown: Solon, Ohio
FGM    FGA    FG%    1-19    20-29    30-39    40-49    50+    LONG    XPM    XPA    PTS
19    21    90.5    1-1    8-8    5-5    5-6    0-1    49    50    50    107
A semifinalist for the Groza both in 2014 and as a freshman in 2012, Martin is the only returning FBS kicker who attempted at least 20 field goals last season and made them at a better than 90% rate. Martin has started and scored in all 40 games since joining, leading the team in points each season and already standing as Duke’s all-time leading scorer. 

Jay Mattox – UTEP
Class: Junior  - Hometown: Las Vegas, Nevada
FGM    FGA    FG%    1-19    20-29    30-39    40-49    50+    LONG    XPM    XPA    PTS
13    16    81.3    0-0    7-8    5-6    1-2    0-0    47    43    44    82
UTEP was one of the most improved teams in college football last season, and that step forward was mirrored by kicker Jay Mattox. After making less than half of his field goals as a freshman, Mattox nearly doubled his made FG totals and posted an impressive 13-for-16 campaign while also adding punting duties midway through the year.  

Matthew McCrane – Kansas State
Class: Sophomore - Hometown: Brownwood, Texas
FGM    FGA    FG%    1-19    20-29    30-39    40-49    50+    LONG    XPM    XPA    PTS
18    19    94.7    2-2    5-6    5-5    4-4    2-2    53    41    42    95
Taking over the starting job four weeks into the season, McCrane only had 3 field goals at the 2014 halfway point. Over the final seven games, he kicked 15 more to finish with a 18-for-19 season that matched Groza winner Brad Craddock for the nation’s most accurate season. He set the Kansas State mark for points by a freshman, and is the only freshman kicker in Wildcats history with multiple 50-yard field goals.

Trevor Moore – North Texas
Class: Sophomore - Hometown: Edmond, Oklahoma
FGM    FGA    FG%    1-19    20-29    30-39    40-49    50+    LONG    XPM    XPA    PTS
15    17    88.2    1-1    6-6    4-5    4-5    0-0    47    37    37    82
En route to setting a North Texas record for the most accurate season in history, Moore stepped up early and often in his freshman season. After not getting a chance to attempt a field goal in his first career game, he went 5-for-5 in a Week 2 win against SMU. He nearly did the same in the season’s final game, going 4-for-4 to finish with a team-leading 82 points.

Marshall Morgan – Georgia
Class: Senior - Hometown: Fort Lauderdale, Florida
FGM    FGA    FG%    1-19    20-29    30-39    40-49    50+    LONG    XPM    XPA    PTS
16    21    76.2    1-1    7-8    4-5    3-6    1-1    53    67    68    115
A semifinalist for the Groza in 2013, Morgan led the SEC in scoring last year with 115 points, with 67 coming on a new Georgia record for extra points in a season. After finishing last season having made 17 straight field goals, he connected on his first three attempts in 2014 to set the SEC record with 20 consecutive made kicks.

Cole Murphy – Syracuse
Class: Sophomore - Hometown: Castaic, California
FGM    FGA    FG%    1-19    20-29    30-39    40-49    50+    LONG    XPM    XPA    PTS
13    16    81.3    0-0    5-5    3-5    3-4    2-2    50    11    12    50
A 2014 Groza semifinalist, Murphy led Syracuse in scoring as a true freshman. Kicking for a young Orange team, he only had the chance to attempt field goals in nine games, but made the most of his chances, including a run of four straight multi-FG games. His two 50-yard kicks made him the first Syracuse kicker to connect from long range since 2008.

Jaden Oberkrom – TCU
Class: Senior - Hometown: Arlington, Texas
FGM    FGA    FG%    1-19    20-29    30-39    40-49    50+    LONG    XPM    XPA    PTS
22    27    81.5    0-0    10-11    6-7    6-9    0-0    47    76    77    142
A semifinalist for the Groza both in 2014 and as a freshman in 2012, Oberkrom led all FBS kickers with 142 points, a total that ranked sixth among all players at any position. He scored double digit points in eight games, including an astounding 22-point performance against Texas Tech in which he went 4-for-4 on FGs and a school-record 10 extra points.

Andy Phillips – Utah
Class: Junior - Hometown: Draper, Utah
FGM    FGA    FG%    1-19    20-29    30-39    40-49    50+    LONG    XPM    XPA    PTS
23    28    82.1    0-0    4-4    7-9    10-13    2-2    50    44    45    113
A Groza semifinalist in both 2014 and 2013, Phillips is one of just four returning kickers to earn the honor in back-to-back years. His 23 field goals set a new Utah record and tied him for fourth in FBS. His 12 made kicks from at least 40 yards out were second in the country. He kicked at least 3 FGs in four games, including the game-winner over then-#8 UCLA.

Aidan Schneider – Oregon
Class: Sophomore - Hometown: Portland, Oregon
FGM    FGA    FG%    1-19    20-29    30-39    40-49    50+    LONG    XPM    XPA    PTS
11    12    91.7    0-0    5-6    4-4    2-2    0-0    42    40    42    73
For years, Oregon’s kicking game has been minimized by batches of touchdowns, but the Ducks enter 2015 with not one but two capable stars. Stepping in after Matt Wogan battled injuries, Schneider stepped up throughout the second half, going 11-for-12 on big stages including the Pac-12 Championship Game, Rose Bowl, and the CFP National Championship.

Robert Stein – Akron
Class: Senior - Hometown: Cincinnati, Ohio
FGM    FGA    FG%    1-19    20-29    30-39    40-49    50+    LONG    XPM    XPA    PTS
13    16    81.3    0-0    5-6    4-4    4-5    0-1    46    27    27    66
After winning back his starting job early in the year, Stein went on to lead the Zips in scoring with 66 points. The senior stayed perfect for most of the year, but amid driving rains and swirling winds, he finally missed a pair of attempts in the ninth game of the year. Set that weather-beaten game aside and Stein’s only miss was on his final attempt of the year.

Aleem Sunanon – South Alabama
Class: Junior - Hometown: Orlando, Florida
FGM    FGA    FG%    1-19    20-29    30-39    40-49    50+    LONG    XPM    XPA    PTS
15    18    83.3    0-0    6-6    4-6    5-6    0-0    46    24    26    69
A year after setting the school record for points in a season, Sunanon in 2014 became the first player in South Alabama history to lead the team in scoring in back-to-back seasons. 14 of his field goals came in the final seven games of the regular season, including scoring all 12 of the Jaguars points against South Carolina with a 4-for-4 performance.

Tyler Tate – Bowling Green
Class: Senior - Hometown: Carroll, Ohio
FGM    FGA    FG%    1-19    20-29    30-39    40-49    50+    LONG    XPM    XPA    PTS
23    29    79.3    0-1    8-9    10-12    4-5    1-2    52    45    48    114
Tate continues to rewrite the Bowling Green record books, adding the school records for field goals both in one season and in a career. He was at his best in close games, kicking 3 FGs in a 36-35 win over Buffalo, three more in a 30-20 win over Kent State, and going 4-for-4 in a 45-42 win over Indiana. He was named to the Capital One Academic All-America first team, the first Bowling Green player to earn the honor since 1990.

Cameron Van Winkle – Washington
Class: Junior  - Hometown: Fall City, Washington
FGM    FGA    FG%    1-19    20-29    30-39    40-49    50+    LONG    XPM    XPA    PTS
20    24    83.3    1-1    6-6    8-9    4-7    1-1    51    47    49    107
With 20 made field goals and a 107-point scoring total that nearly doubled his next closest teammate, Van Winkle’s 2014 season was one to be celebrated for its accomplishments. But the story of his success might be best told in his three regular season misses: a blocked attempt, a bounce off the upright, and a ball taken in 50mph winds. Three bad breaks, or he might be Groza finalist Cameron Van Winkle.

John Wallace – Louisville
Class: Senior - Hometown: Cecilia, Kentucky
FGM    FGA    FG%    1-19    20-29    30-39    40-49    50+    LONG    XPM    XPA    PTS
15    19    78.9    0-0    3-3    6-8    5-7    1-1    51    50    50    95
A 2014 Groza semifinalist, Wallace continues to climb towards 2006 winner Art Carmody’s school records. He needs 10 field goals to pass Carmody’s career mark, and 10 points to move to second behind him in career scoring. Last season he added his first career FG from at least 50 yards, connecting from 51 against Syracuse.



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