July 13, 2011
PHILADELPHIA, Pa. - The race for the 2011 Walter Payton Award, sponsored by Fathead.com, kicked off July 11 with The Sports Network's announcement that six returning finalists from last season headline a stellar 20-player Watch List for the Football Championship Subdivision's top individual honor.
Jackson State senior quarterback Casey Therriault was among the six returning finalists from last season added to the Walter Payton Award watch list.
Therriault accounted for 41 touchdowns (31 passing, 10 rushing) and was third in the FCS in passing yards per game (312.4) and total offense (327.8 ypg).
No player from Jackson State has won the award and only one player from the SWAC, Steve McNair, has won the award. McNair won the award in 1994.
The Payton Award will celebrate its 25th anniversary this season and be presented to the FCS' outstanding player at the national awards banquet Thursday night, Jan. 5 in Frisco, Texas.
The Sports Network also presents the Buck Buchanan, Jerry Rice and Eddie Robinson awards which are sponsored by Fathead.com. The Buchanan Award honors the FCS defensive player of the year, the new Rice Award goes to the FCS freshman of the year and the Robinson Award, which also is celebrating its 25th anniversary, honors the FCS coach of the year. Those three winners will join the top three Payton finalists at the national awards banquet.