TYLER, Texas — Texas A&M’s electrifying sophomore wide receiver/punt returner Christian Kirk has been named a semifinalist for the Earl Campbell Tyler Rose Award, which is given annually to the nation’s top offensive player with ties to the state of Texas.

Kirk, from Scottsdale, Ariz., leads the nation with three punt return touchdowns in 2016 and has five for his career. He also leads the SEC in receptions with 69 for 735 yards and seven touchdowns. He averages an amazing 24.5 yards per punt return this season, and he is the leading active punt returner in the Football Bowl Subdivision with a career average of 24.4 yards per return. A threat as a runner, receiver and return man, Kirk averages over 12 yards every time he touches the football in 2016.

2016 Earl Campbell Tyler Rose Semifinalists

J. T. Barrett, Ohio State, QB, Jr. - Wichita Falls, TX (Rider HS) – Big Ten

Jerod Evans, QB, Virginia Tech, Jr. – Dallas, TX (Mansfield HS) – Atlantic Coast Conference

D’Onta Foreman, RB, Texas, Jr. – Texas City, TX (Texas City HS) – Big 12

Ryan Higgins, QB, Louisiana Tech, Sr. – Hutto, TX (Hutto HS) – Conference USA

Skyler Howard, QB, West Virginia, Sr. – Ft. Worth, TX (Brewer HS) – Big 12

Jalen Hurts, QB, Alabama, Fr. – Channelview, TX (Channelview HS) – SEC

Aaron Jones, RB, UTEP, Jr. – El Paso, TX (Burges HS) – Conference USA

Zay Jones, WR, East Carolina, Sr. – Austin, TX (Stephen F. Austin HS) – American Athletic Conference

Christian Kirk, WR, Texas A&M, Soph. – Scottsdale, AZ (Saguaro HS) – SEC

Patrick Mahomes, II, QB, Texas Tech, Jr. – Whitehouse, TX (Whitehouse HS) – Big 12

Baker Mayfield, QB, Oklahoma, Jr. – Austin, TX (Lake Travis HS) – Big 12

Greg Ward, Jr., QB, Houston, Sr. – Tyler, TX (John Tyler HS) – American Athletic Conference

James Washington, WR, Oklahoma State, Jr. – Stamford, TX (Stamford HS) – Big 12

Davis Webb, QB, California, Sr. – Prosper, TX (Prosper HS) – Pac-12

Dede Westbrook, WR, Oklahoma, Sr. – Cameron, TX (Cameron Yoe HS) – Big 12

Rawleigh Williams, III, RB, Arkansas, Soph. – Dallas, TX (Bishop Lynch HS) – SEC

Finalists will be selected from this group and announced on December 7, 2016. The winner will be announced at the award banquet in Tyler, Texas on January 11, 2017.


The Earl Campbell Tyler Rose Award, announced in 2012 by the Tyler Chamber and SPORTyler, recognizes the top offensive player in Division 1 football who also exhibits the enduring characteristics that define Earl Campbell: integrity, performance, teamwork, sportsmanship, drive, community, and tenacity; specifically tenacity to persist and determination to overcome adversity and injury in pursuit of reaching goals.

In addition, the nominee must meet one or more of the following criteria: born in Texas and/or graduated from a Texas High School and/or played at a Texas-based junior college or four year D1 Texas college.

For more information about The Earl Campbell Tyler Rose Award go to www.earlcampbellaward.com or contact Cindy Smoak, SPORTyler, Tyler Area Chamber of Commerce: csmoak@tylertexas.com or 903-592-1661, extension 237.