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Fitzgerald, Simmons named semifinalists for awards

Junior Nick Fitzgerald and sophomore Jeffery Simmons were selected semifinalists for the Maxwell Award and Bednarik Award, respectively, on Monday as the Maxwell Football Club released its full list of semifinalists for the national honors.

Posted: Nov 7, 2017 8:50 AM

STARKVILLE, Miss. (WTVA/MSU Athletics) – Junior Nick Fitzgerald and sophomore Jeffery Simmons were selected semifinalists for the Maxwell Award and Bednarik Award, respectively, on Monday as the Maxwell Football Club released its full list of semifinalists for the national honors.

 

Mississippi State was one of six schools to have a semifinalist named to both awards. It is the first time that MSU has had semifinalists for both honors in the same season since Dak Prescott and Benardrick McKinney were selected to the Maxwell Award and Bednarik Award semifinalist lists, respectively, during the 2014 season.

 

Since 1937, the Maxwell Award has been given annually to “America’s College Player of the Year.” Fitzgerald becomes the first Bulldog named a semifinalist for the award since Prescott in 2015. He is one of four players from the Southeastern Conference to make the cut of 18 semifinalists.

 

The Richmond Hill, Ga., native has proven to be one of the best duel-threat quarterbacks in the nation. He leads MSU in rushing with 686 yards on the ground, which is the most by an SEC quarterback this season and ranks sixth amongst the league. He averages 83.2 yards per game and 6.7 yards per carry. He also leads the team with 10 rushing scores, which is tops amongst SEC quarterbacks and good for second in the conference. 

 

Fitzgerald has turned in four 100-yard rushing outings this season to bring his career total to 12, which sets the MSU and the SEC record for most 100-yard rushing games by a quarterback. He also became just the sixth quarterback in SEC history to rush for over 2,000 yards with 2,168 over his career.

 

Through the air, Fitzgerald has gone 119-for-209 (56.9 percent) for 1,320 yards during his junior campaign. He has thrown for 13 touchdowns over the first eight games of the season, which already has Fitzgerald ranked in a tie for ninth in MSU single-season history. In total this season, Fitzgerald has accounted for 2,006 yards of offense and 23 total touchdowns. His efforts have won SEC Offensive Player of the Week honors twice this season to bring his career total to four, which ranks second to Prescott’s school-record five selections.

 

Over his career, Fitzgerald has been responsible for 63 total touchdowns; and earlier this season, he joined Prescott as the only players in school history to rush for 25 career touchdowns and pass for 25 career touchdowns. He currently ranks tied for third in school history with 29 career rushing touchdowns and fourth with 37 career passing scores.

 

The Chuck Bednarik Award was created by the Maxwell Football Club in honor of college football and NFL Hall of Famer Chuck Bednarik and is presented to the top defensive player across college football. Simmons is just one of three semifinalists from the SEC and is the first Bulldog to be name a semifinalist for the award since McKinney in 2014.

 

Simmons has dominated the defensive line for the Bulldogs this season with 36 total tackles over Mississippi State's first eight contests. The Macon, Miss., native has racked up 6.0 tackles for loss for a total loss of 29 yards, which includes a career-best 3.5 sacks. Defensively, he has forced two fumbles and recovered one while tallying two blocks on special teams, which ranks Simmons in a tie for first across the nation.

Semifinalist voting for both awards will begin on Tuesday, Oct. 31 and will close on Sunday, Nov. 19. Three finalists for each award will be announced on Monday, Nov. 20 and a second round of voting will take place at that time. Eligible voters include Maxwell Football Club members, NCAA head football coaches, sports information directors and selected national media.

 

The winners of the 81st Maxwell Award and the 23rd Chuck Bednarik Award will be announced as part of the Home Depot College Football Awards show, which will be broadcasted live on ESPN on Dec. 7, 2017.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 112123

Reported Deaths: 3223
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Hinds7823176
DeSoto676778
Harrison490283
Jackson439383
Rankin385986
Madison375793
Lee349079
Forrest298078
Jones285384
Washington253799
Lafayette244042
Lauderdale2398134
Lamar219038
Bolivar199477
Oktibbeha197654
Neshoba1820111
Lowndes175562
Panola167638
Leflore163287
Sunflower158849
Warren153255
Monroe146572
Pontotoc145219
Pike137256
Lincoln136856
Marshall136226
Copiah135736
Coahoma124036
Scott123829
Grenada120638
Yazoo119933
Simpson119549
Union116025
Leake113940
Holmes113760
Tate113639
Itawamba111325
Pearl River110559
Adams105243
Prentiss102919
Wayne99421
Alcorn96712
George95718
Covington94525
Marion93342
Tippah86521
Newton84927
Chickasaw83225
Winston82621
Tallahatchie82525
Tishomingo79741
Hancock78727
Attala78126
Clarke72750
Clay68421
Jasper67417
Walthall63327
Calhoun61812
Noxubee59617
Smith58516
Claiborne53416
Montgomery53123
Tunica52317
Yalobusha51314
Lawrence50414
Perry48423
Carroll46812
Greene45918
Stone45514
Amite42013
Humphreys41916
Quitman4176
Jefferson Davis40011
Webster36613
Wilkinson33120
Kemper32115
Benton3194
Sharkey28014
Jefferson27110
Franklin2373
Choctaw2036
Issaquena1064
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Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 153016

Reported Deaths: 2633
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Jefferson22720374
Mobile14405314
Tuscaloosa10066137
Montgomery9820196
Madison907894
Shelby715361
Lee646165
Baldwin644369
Marshall431048
Calhoun416059
Etowah412249
Morgan400033
Houston365532
DeKalb325428
Elmore312852
St. Clair283842
Limestone273630
Walker269993
Talladega259135
Cullman231024
Lauderdale212540
Jackson205515
Autauga202130
Franklin201731
Colbert193330
Russell19053
Blount187325
Dallas186027
Chilton182632
Escambia171428
Coffee16829
Covington166629
Dale163851
Chambers133043
Pike131313
Tallapoosa129587
Clarke127317
Marion105029
Butler99840
Barbour9969
Marengo98222
Winston90613
Geneva8447
Lawrence81131
Pickens81117
Randolph80514
Bibb80114
Hale74830
Cherokee72314
Clay72212
Lowndes70228
Henry6386
Bullock63717
Monroe63610
Washington62312
Crenshaw59830
Perry5816
Wilcox55912
Fayette55713
Conecuh55613
Cleburne5327
Macon53020
Sumter46821
Lamar4595
Choctaw38712
Greene34016
Coosa1993
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