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Ryan Miller

Thirty-five players from the Football Championship Subdivision made the Walter Payton Award Preseason Watch List. One is Furman tight end Ryan Miller.

The Walter Payton Award is presented to the national offensive player of the year in NCAA Division I FCS.

Miller, a 5th-year member of Furman’s program and a 2-time All-American, caught 43 passes for 749 yards and 7 touchdowns, which ranked 3rd in the Southern Conference in all three categories a season ago.

The Jackson, Tenn., native has caught 16 TD passes in his career, a record for Paladin tight ends.

Louis Ivory of Furman was the 2000 winner of the Walter Payton Award. Ivory rushed for 2,079 yards and 16 touchdowns that season.

 

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Walter Payton Award Preseason Watch List

Quarterbacks

Nic Baker, Southern Illinois, Jr., 5-9, 194

Tim DeMorat, Fordham, Gr., 6-4, 220 (2020 and 2021 Finalist)

Nick Howard, Dartmouth, Sr., 6-2, 230.

Parker McKinney, Eastern Kentucky, R-Jr., 6-3, 208

Tommy Mellot, Montana State, So., 6-0, 195

Shedeur Sanders, Jackson State, So., 6-2, 215

Lindsey Scott Jr., UIW, Sr., 5-11, 220

Trae Self, Stephen F. Austin, Sr., 6-4, 190

Jason Shelley, Missouri State, Sr., 5-11, 197 (2021 Finalist)

Xavier Shepherd, Kennesaw State, Jr., 6-0, 205 (2021 Finalist)

Reece Udinski, Richmond, Gr., 6-4, 220

Running Backs

Jake Chisholm, Dayton, Sr., 5-9, 191 (2021 Finalist)

Isaiah Davis, South Dakota State, Jr., 6-1, 220

Juwon Farri, Monmouth, R-Sr., 5-10, 195 (2020 Finalist)

Ailym Ford, Chattanooga, Jr., 5-9, 213

Narii Gaither, Gardner-Webb, Sr., 5-10, 181

Ulonzo Gilliam Jr., UC Davis, Sr., 5-9, 189

Malik Grant, Sacred Heart, Sr., 5-9, 200 (2021 Finalist)

Julien Gums, Nicholls, Sr., 5-10, 230

Darius Hale, Central Arkansas, So., 5-11, 225

Geno Hess, Southeast Missouri, Sr., 5-8, 209 (2021 Finalist)

Isaiah Ifanse, Montana State, Sr., 5-10, 202 (2021 Finalist)

Hunter Luepke, North Dakota State, Sr., 6-1, 236

Jaleel McLaughlin, Youngstown State, Sr., 5-9, 195

Jacob Saylors, ETSU, Sr., 5-11, 195

Wide Receivers

Avante Cox, Southern Illinois, Sr., 5-10, 170

Shaquan Davis, South Carolina State, R-Jr., 6-5, 215

Xavier Gipson, Stephen F. Austin, Sr., 5-9, 170 (2021 Finalist)

Taylor Grimes, UIW, Sr., 5-11, 190

Jakob Herres, Richmond, Gr., 6-4, 225 (2020 Finalist)

Jaxon Janke, South Dakota State, Sr., 6-3, 210

Xavier Smith, Florida A&M, Gr., 5-10, 170

Tight Ends

Kemari Averett, Bethune-Cookman, Sr., 6-6, 260

Tucker Kraft, South Dakota State, Jr., 6-5, 255

Ryan Miller, Furman, R-Sr., 6-2, 221

In addition to the Walter Payton Award, Stats Perform will also present the Buck Buchanan Award (FCS Defensive Player of the Year), Jerry Rice Award (Freshman Player of the Year), Eddie Robinson Award (Coach of the Year), and Doris Robinson Scholar-Athlete of the Year.