UCF Football’s Senior Safety Richie Grant Named Finalist for Jim Thorpe Award
By Daniel Forcella, UCFKnights.com // December 23, 2020
led Knights with 72 total tackles, 49 unassisted
ORLANDO – UCF senior safety Richie Grant was honored as a finalist for the Jim Thorpe Award on Tuesday, being named as one of the top three defensive backs in the nation.
The Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame announced Tuesday the three finalists for the 2020 Paycom Jim Thorpe Award, awarded to the best defensive back in college football, and UCF’s Richie Grant was among the student-athletes honored.
The other two finalists are Patrick Surtain II of Alabama and Trevon Moerhig of TCU.
Grant, a unanimous first-team all-conference selection in The American, led the Knights with 72 total tackles, 49 unassisted and 3.5 for a loss during the regular season. He had three interceptions, his first-career sack, six pass breakups, two forced fumbles and two fumble recoveries.
The award recipient is selected from the three finalists by the Paycom Jim Thorpe Award National Selection Committee, which boasts members of the NCFAA, an Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame in-house award committee, former Paycom Jim Thorpe Award recipients, and sportswriters and college football journalists throughout the country.
The 2020 Paycom Jim Thorpe Award winner will be announced on The Home Depot College Football Awards, Thursday, Jan. 7, 2021, 7-8:30 p.m. ET, live on ESPN.
The Paycom Jim Thorpe Award commemorative banquet is scheduled to be held Tuesday, March 30, 2021, in Oklahoma City.
PAYCOM JIM THORPE AWARD FINALISTS FAN VOTE
For its third consecutive year, the Paycom Jim Thorpe Award will release the official Finalists Fan Vote. Voting will open Tuesday, December 22nd, and close Thursday, December 31st, at 11:59 p.m. ET. The winner of the fan vote will receive one vote towards the overall nationwide results. Use the link below to be directed to the Paycom Jim Thorpe Award Fan Vote.
The Paycom Jim Thorpe Award is a member of the National College Football Awards Association (NCFAA), which encompasses the most prestigious awards in college football. Founded in 1997, the NCFAA and its 25 awards now boast over 800 recipients, dating to 1935. Visit ncfaa.org and @NCFAA on Twitter to learn more about this association.
The Paycom Jim Thorpe Award is awarded to the best defensive back in college football based on performance on the field, athletic ability and character. The award was established in 1986 and is named after history’s greatest all-around athlete, Jim Thorpe.
Thorpe excelled as a running back, passer and kicker on the offensive side of the ball, but also stood out as a defensive back.
In addition to his legendary performance on the football field, Thorpe played professional baseball and won Olympic gold medals in the decathlon and pentathlon. The Paycom Jim Thorpe Award is universally accepted as one of the nation’s top collegiate sports honors.