QB Jeremiah Briscoe wins Walter Payton Award as FCS' top player

FRISCO, Texas -- Sam Houston State junior quarterback Jeremiah Briscoe has been named the top offensive player in the Football Championship Subdivision after throwing for 4,602 yards and an NCAA-leading 57 touchdowns this season.

Briscoe won the Walter Payton Award on Friday night over two other finalists, receiver Cooper Kupp and quarterback Gage Gubrud, both from Eastern Washington. Briscoe, who transferred from UAB after it shut down its football program, passed for 4,602 yards and 57 touchdowns for the Bearkats (12-1).

"It's an absolutely true honor, but none of that happens without the best receiving corps in the country," Briscoe said. "Our receivers kept making plays and plays and crazy catches. That's what happens when our offensive line protects the way they do and our receivers just make plays. It's not me at all."

Kupp won the award last season and finished his college career with 428 catches for 6,464 yards and 73 TDs. Appalachian State quarterback Armanti Edwards (2008-09) remains the only player to win the award twice.

In a ceremony in advance of the FCS championship game Saturday, Northern Iowa senior defensive end Karter Schult was presented the Buck Buchanan Award as the top defensive player. Schult, whose 17 sacks led all Division I players, edged out Missouri State linebacker Dylan Cole and Sam Houston end P.J. Hall for that award.

Sam Houston's K.C. Keeler was given the Eddie Robinson Award for top coach. Duquesne running back A.J. Hines was named the top freshman and presented his trophy by award namesake Jerry Rice.

Eastern Kentucky quarterback Tyler Swafford won the Doris & Eddie Robinson Scholar-Athlete Award.

James Madison, which beat five-time defending champion North Dakota State in the semifinals, plays Youngstown State in the FCS title game Saturday.


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