Palm Beach County Sports Commission Presents

Lou Groza Collegiate Place-Kicker Award

Palm Beach Sports

Stars of the Week






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Rodrigo Blankenship


Clayton Hatfield

Texas Tech

Chase McLaughlin


College football’s top kicking award, the Palm Beach County Sports Commission Lou Groza Collegiate Place-Kicker Award presented by the Orange Bowl recognizes three of the top kickers each week from FBS division teams as the “Stars of the Week.” This week’s Stars were selected from among the 20 semifinalists.

Georgia junior Rodrigo Blankenship’s 10-point performance helped the Bulldogs clinch another trip to Atlanta for the SEC Championship game with a 34-17 defeat of Kentucky on the road in Lexington on Saturday. The Marietta, Georgia native made field goals of 38 and 23 yards to bring his season totals to 15-for-17. He added four PATs to make it a perfect 40-for-40 on the year. His 85 points lead the team in scoring and place him in the top ten among all FBS players.

Texas Tech’s Clayton Hatfield made two field goals in the Red Raiders’ narrow 51-46 loss to Oklahoma in Big 12 action in Lubbock, Texas on Saturday. He connected from 43 and 26 yards to improve his season total to 12-for-13 on field goals. That 92.3% rate ties him for third among qualified FBS kickers. The senior from Boerne, Texas has 45 career field goals which place him third school history. He added four PATs for a 10-point game, moving to 48-for-48 this season. His 84 points lead all Texas Tech players and rank 7th among FBS kickers.

Chase McLaughlin had the highest scoring Saturday among the 20 Lou Groza Award semifinalists. He made field goals of 48 and 36 yards while matching his career high with seven PATs for a 13-point game as Illinois rolled over Minnesota 51-31 at home in Champaign, Illinois. The senior from Cypress, Texas has moved into third place nationally with 17 field goals, including an FBS-best nine from at least 40 yards out. He has not missed an extra point in 30 tries. His 81 points lead all Illinois players in scoring and put him just outside the top ten among kickers.

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 will be presented live as part of the ESPN Home Depot College Football Awards Show in Atlanta, GA on Thursday, December 6. The three finalists will be honored during a celebration in Palm Beach County, culminating with the 27th Annual Lou Groza Collegiate Place-Kicker Award Banquet, presented by the Orange Bowl, on Monday, December 3.

National College Football Awards Association

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 24 awards boast over 750 years of tradition-selection excellence. Visit to learn more about our story.

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 and the Kids Fitness Festival of the Palm Beaches. For more information on the Palm Beach County Sports Commission, go to





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Palm Beach County Sports Commission

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