Tulane's Cairo Santos Named to 2013 Lou Groza Award Watch List

TULANEGREENWAVE.COM Tulane's Cairo Santos won the 2012 Groza with the first 21-for-21 field goal season in FBS history.
Tulane's Cairo Santos won the 2012 Groza with the first 21-for-21 field goal season in FBS history.

July 10, 2013

New Orleans - Tulane senior kicker Cairo Santos has not only been named to the 2013 Lou Groza Preseason Watch List but the reigning Groza Award winner will look to become just the second repeat winner in Groza history, as the 30-player Watch List was announced by the Palm Beach County Sports Commission.

Santos won the 2012 Groza with the first 21-for-21 field goal season in FBS history and was named a consensus All-American after leading the team in points scored (89) and hitting 26-of-27 on PATs.

He was 12-for-12 from 40-plus yards, including 2-for-2 from 50-plus yards. He connected on a then-school record 54 yarder vs. ULM on Sept. 29 before eclipsing that with a 57-yard boot vs. Rice on Nov. 3. Santos claimed first-team All-America honors from the Associated Press, Football Writers Associated of America, Sports Illustrated and Phil Steele Publications while garnering first-team All C-USA and All-Louisiana recognition. He tied an NCAA Division I record in field goal percentage while becoming just the second player in DI-FBS to finish perfect with 20-plus field goal attempts.

If he defends his title, he would join former Florida State kicker Sebastian Janikowski (1998 & 1999) as the only players to win multiple Grozas.

Kickers on the Lou Groza Award Watch List were chosen based on statistics from the 2012 season and 2013 expectations. Ten conferences are represented among the 30 kickers, led by four each from the ACC, Big Ten, Conference USA and the MAC, while the Mountain West placed three representatives. The American, Big 12, Pac-12, SEC and the Sun Belt each had two kickers recognized, along with independent Notre Dame.

While the Watch List highlights thirty of the best returning kickers in the country, Santos, who was not on the 2012 Watch List, stands as proof that the Groza Committee will be watching all FBS kickers during the season, and releasing a weekly "Stars of the Week" feature on www.lougrozaaward.com.



Accomplishments are tabulated throughout the season and the Lou Groza Collegiate Place-Kicker Award will announce its 20 semifinalists on Monday, November 4th. From this list, a panel of more than 300 FBS head coaches, SIDs, media members, and former winners selects the top three finalists for the award by Monday, November 25th. That same group then selects the national winner, who will be announced on Thursday, December 12th during the Home Depot College Football Awards, broadcast live from Orlando, Fla.

The 22nd Annual Lou Groza Collegiate Place-Kicker Award, presented by the Orange Bowl Committee, recognizes the three finalists during an early week celebration in Palm Beach County, culminating with a gala awards banquet on December 10th, prior to joining ESPN in Orlando.

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 www.lougrozaaward.com. For even more updates on the best kicking performances throughout the season, follow @LouGrozaAward on Twitter.

2013 Lou Groza Award Preseason Watch List
Chris Boswell, Rice
Kyle Brindza, Notre Dame
Jeff Budzien, Northwestern
Chandler Catanzaro, Clemson
Brian Davis, Arkansas State
Jeremiah Detmer, Toledo
Nick Diaz, Utah State
Mitch Ewald, Indiana
Nate Freese, Boston College
Andrew Furney, Washington State
Brendan Gibbons, Michigan
Warren Harvey, East Carolina
Michael Hunnicutt, Oklahoma
Cody Journell, Virginia Tech
Ty Long, UAB
Austin Lopez, San Jose State
Ross Martin, Duke
Mike Meyer, Iowa
Tony Miliano, Cincinnati
Dylan Mulder, Eastern Michigan
Jaden Oberkrom, TCU
Cody Parkey, Auburn
Kaleb Patterson, Miami
Jared Roberts, Colorado State
Trevor Romaine, Oregon State
Cairo Santos, Tulane*
Will Scott, Troy
Mathew Sims, Northern Illinois
Carey Spear, Vanderbilt
John Wallace, Louisville

*2012 Lou Groza Award Place-Kicker of the Year