HUNTINGTON, W.Va. -- Marshall senior tight end Gator Hoskins has been named a semifinalist for the 2013 John Mackey Award, which is presented annually to the student-athlete voted as the nation’s best tight end.
Hoskins is tied for 10th nationally with nine touchdowns catches this season, a figure that is tops among tight ends by two. For the season, he has 28 catches for 455 yards (16.55 yards per catch). His two touchdown catches in the 45-34 win at Tulsa gave him 22 for his career, tying him for No. 9 all-time on the Marshall list with Jim Swierczek (1951-53). The school’s tight end record for touchdown catches is 23, by Cody Slate (2006-09). For his efforts, Hoskins was named a midseason All-Conference USA first team selection by Phil Steele in October.
Hoskins caught 10 touchdowns passes for the Thundering Herd last season to lead all tight ends nationally, while snaring 35 passes for 374 yards. The 10 TDs were also second-highest in Conference USA behind East Carolina’s Justin Hardy (11). Hoskins’ 10 TD catches also is a Marshall single-season record for a tight end.
Last season, the Gainesville, Fla., native was added to the Mackey Watch List of after a strong start that saw him grab three touchdowns in a narrow loss at Purdue in September. At season’s end, he was named All-Conference USA by league coaches, CollegeFootballNews.com, CollegeSportsMadness.com and Phil Steele.
Hoskins was one of eight 2013 semifinalists named. The others were: Jace Amaro (Jr., Texas Tech), Ted Bolser (Sr., Indiana), Eric Ebron (Jr., North Carolina), Devin Funchess (So., Michigan), Troy Niklas (Jr., Notre Dame), Nick O'Leary (Jr., Florida State) and Austin Seferian-Jenkins (Jr., Washington).
The eight semifinalists were determined by confidential balloting of the John Mackey Award Selection Committee. The 2013 John Mackey Award recipient will be announced on Dec. 11 and presented live on Dec. 12 at The Home Depot College Football Awards Red Carpet Show (6 p.m., ESPNU). Other key dates include the announcement of the three Mackey Finalists on Nov. 25. All future announcements can be found at www.johnmackeyaward.com and on our official twitter account: @JohnMackeyAward.
NFL Hall of Fame member John Mackey is considered to be the best to have played the tight end position. A tight end by whom all others are measured, Mackey was a role model on and off the field as demonstrated by his Super Bowl Championship, his commitment to community and his place in history as the first President of the NFLPA.
The John Mackey Award, presented since 2000, lists twelve alumni to have played in the NFL: two-time Super Bowl Champion Daniel Graham ('01), 2006 Super Bowl Champion Dallas Clark ('02) of the Baltimore Ravens, Kellen Winslow II ('03) of the New York Jets, two-time Super Bowl Champion Heath Miller ('04) of the Pittsburgh Steelers, Marcedes Lewis ('05) of the Jacksonville Jaguars, 2008 Super Bowl Champion Matt Spaeth ('06) of the Pittsburgh Steelers, Fred Davis ('07) of the Washington Redskins, Chase Coffman ('08) of the Atlanta Falcons, Aaron Hernandez ('09), D.J. Williams ('10), Dwayne Allen ('11) of the Indianapolis Colts and the 2012 John Mackey Award recipient Tyler Eifert of the Cincinnati Bengals.