Tiger defensive end now a finalist for three national awards
CHICAGO – Mizzou Football senior defensive end Michael Sam (Hitchcock, Texas) has been named one of six finalists for the 2013 Ted Hendricks Defensive End of the Year Award, the Ted Hendricks Foundation announced Thursday (Dec. 5). The Tiger defender has put together an exemplary final campaign at Mizzou that continues into Saturday’s SEC Championship Game vs. No. 3 Auburn. Sam currently leads the conference in both sacks (10.5) and tackles-for-loss (18.0).
The Hendricks Award goes annually to the nation’s top defensive end and is named after Ted Hendricks, who became college football’s first three-time First Team All-American at Miami (FL) in the late 1960s.
Sam has been recognized three times this season by the SEC, twice as the league’s defensive line player of the week (Sept. 28, Oct. 5) and once as its defensive player of the week (Oct. 19). All three weekly awards followed impressive 3.0-sack performances from Sam (vs. Arkansas State, at Vanderbilt, vs. No. 22 Florida).
The Hendricks Award selection marks the third national award finalist status attained by Sam this season. He is also a finalist for the Bronko Nagurksi Award (most outstanding defensive player) and Rotary Lombardi Award (lineman of the year).
Sam is joined as a Hendricks finalist by Clemson’s Vic Beasley, Michigan State’s Shilique Calhoun, Montana State’s Brad Daly, Texas’ Jackson Jeffcoat and Louisville’s Marcus Smith.
The final vote for the 2013 Hendricks Award will be concluded on Tuesday, Dec. 10, and the winner will be announced Wednesday, Dec. 11. Members of the national media, head coaches, professional scouts and former Hendricks Award winners are included on the voting committee. This year’s winner will be honored in the spring of 2014 at a time and place to be determined.
Sam and No. 5 Mizzou will take on Auburn for the conference crown inside the Georgia Dome in Atlanta, Ga., on Saturday, Dec. 7. Kickoff for the nationally-televised game is set for 3 p.m. CT on CBS.