Alex Smith is a semi-finalist for College Player of the Year.
Nov. 3, 2004
ROSLYN, Pa. -
Utah quarterback Alex Smith and head coach Urban Meyer have been named semi-finalists for the 2004 Maxwell Football Club awards, honoring the nation's best collegiate football player and coach.
Smith is one of 12 semi-finalists for the 68th-annual Maxwell Award, which goes to the Collegiate Player of the Year. Meyer is one of nine semi-finalists for the 12th-annual George Munger Coach of the Year award.
Smith, also a Heisman Trophy candidate, has quarterbacked the 2004 Utes to an 8-0 start and a No. 6 Bowl Championship Series ranking. The Utes are currently ranked No. 7 in the Associated Press poll and No. 8 in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches poll. He leads the nation in points responsible for (21.0 ppg) and has 20 passing and eight rushing touchdowns. He leads the Mountain West Conference and ranks third in the nation in pass efficiency (173.9) and is tops in the league and No. 10 nationally in total offense (286.1 ypg). He is second in the MWC in passing yards per game (238.1).
Smith has been named the MWC Offensive Player of the Week four times this season. He passed for a career-high 359 yards in a 41-21 win over current No. 22 Texas A&M and rushed for a season-best 84 yards in a 49-35 win over Air Force. He threw five touchdown passes against San Diego State, also a career high.
Meyer has led Utah to an 8-0 record this fall and an 18-2 record since taking over as head coach at Utah in 2003. Utah's 8-0 start ties a school record. Named the 2003 National Coach of the Year by The Sporting News, Meyer was also tabbed as Mountain West Conference Coach of the Year in his debut season. He has led Utah to its highest A.P. ranking (No. 7) in school history, and its first-ever appearance in the BCS standings. The initial 2004 BCS standings had Utah at No. 7--the highest debut ever for a non-BCS team--and the Utes have been No. 6 for the past two weeks.
Meyer, who is also on the Bobby Dodds Coach of the Year "watch list," is 3-0 against BCS teams this year, 5-1 in two years at Utah, and 10-1 in his four-year coaching career.
Named Maxwell semi-finalists along with Smith were: Cedric Benson (Texas), Reggie Bush (USC), Braylon Edwards (Michigan), David Greene (Georgia), Matt Leinart (USC), Kyle Orton (Purdue), Adrian Peterson (Oklahoma), Aaron Rodgers (California), Jason White (Oklahoma), Carnell Williams (Auburn), DeAngelo Williams (Memphis).
Georgia Munger Award semi-finalists along with Meyer are: Barry Alvarez (Wisconsin), Bobby Bowden (Florida State), Pete Carroll (USC), Larry Coker (Miami), Mark Richt (Georgia), Bob Stoops (Oklahoma), Jeff Tedford (California), Tommy Tuperville (Auburn).