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The Palm Beach County Sports Institute and Sports Commission are proud to announce the 20 semifinalists for the 2007 Lou Groza Collegiate Place-Kicker Award presented by the FedEx Orange Bowl. These twenty place-kickers have all excelled throughout the season.

2005 Groza winner Alexis Serna of Oregon State has kicked his way onto the ballot for the third season. 2006 semifinalists back for consideration again are Florida State’s Gary Cismesia, Wisconsin’s Taylor Mehlhaff, and Wake Forest’s Sam Swank.

Through 10 weeks of the season, Ohio State’s Ryan Pretorius leads the nation in kick scoring with 91 points. Jose Martinez of UTEP has the longest field goal among our semi-finalists, 57 yards. Boise State’s Kyle Brotzman’s 44 of 44 PAT’s is best among our semi-finalists in that category.

And the 2007 Lou Groza Semifinalists are …

Name School XPM XPA XP% FGM FGA FG% Long Points
Connor Barth North Carolina 15 17 88.2 13 14 92.9 51 54
Travis Bell Georgia Tech 23 23 100 18 21 85.7 51 77
Michael Braunstein Ohio University 31 31 100 16 19 84.2 47 79
Kyle Brotzman Boise State 44 44 100 11 12 91.7 47 77
Gary Cismesia Florida State 21 22 95.5 19 25 76. 45 78
Jud Dunlevy Virginia Tech 27 28 96.4 13 15 86.7 52 66
Matt Evensen Oregon 42 42 100 10 13 76.9 47 72
Steven Hauschka North Carolina State 20 20 100 14 15 93.3 49 62
Daniel Lincoln Tennessee 37 37 100 16 18 88.9 48 85
Jose Martinez UTEP 38 38 100 12 14 85.7 57 74
Pat McAfee West Virginia 40 41 97.6 9 10 90 49 67
Taylor Mehlhaff Wisconsin 31 32 96.9 15 17 88.2 51 76
Ryan Pretorius Ohio State 40 40 100 17 21 81 50 91
Jason Reda Illinois 33 33 100 13 14 92.9 51 72
Louie Sakoda Utah 23 24 95.8 15 17 88.2 51 68
Alexis Serna Oregon State 21 21 100 11 15 73.3 52 54
Austin Starr Indiana 38 38 100 17 18 94.4 49 89
Sam Swank Wake Forest 31 31 100 14 17 82.4 52 73
Swayze Waters UAB 13 14 92.9 19 24 79.2 52 70
Thomas Weber Arizona State 34 35 97.1 18 19 94.7 50 88

The Lou Groza Collegiate Place-Kicker Award recognizes the top place-kicker in NCAA Division I-A football. Voters for the award include Division I-A head coaches, sports writers and sportscasters, conference representatives, professional kickers, and previous Groza Award finalists.

The three finalists for the Lou Groza Award are announced on Monday, November 19 and will be honored at the 16th Annual Lou Groza Collegiate Place-Kicker Award Banquet on Tuesday, December 4 at the Palm Beach Gardens Marriott. The 2007 Lou Groza Collegiate Place-Kicker Award winner will be announced on Thursday, December 6 during the ESPN Home Depot College Football Award Show in Orlando, Florida.

The award, now in its 16th year, is named for NFL Hall-of-Fame kicker Lou 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. Nicknamed “The Toe,” Groza was one of the first people to truly make kicking an art form, and he helped usher in to football the idea that a player could be used exclusively for kicking.

For more information on the 20 semifinalists, please visit http://www.lougrozaaward.com/Candidates/index.htm

The Lou Groza Award is presented by the FedEx Orange Bowl and is also sponsored by The Breakers, Bus One, LLC, Continental Airlines, Discretion Entertainment LLC, Enterprise rent-a-car, ESPN Radio 760, ESPN Regional Television, Hartless Foundation, JBS Destination Solutions, McGladrey & Pullen LLP, Palm Beach Kennel Club, The Palm Beach Post, Parallax Productions, Romano Law Group, Rooney’s Public House, The Tux Shop, and WPEC News 12.