Nov 19, 2012 2:04 PM by Andrew Masuda
Cal Poly slotback Deonte Williams is one of twenty finalists for the Walter Payton Award. The Payton Award, presented by The Sports Network, and in its 26th year, is presented to the outstanding player in the Football Championship Subdivision.
This year's winner will join a list of Payton Award greats such as Steve McNair, Brian Westbrook, John Friesz, Tony Romo, Brian Finneran, Armanti Edwards and 2011 recipient Bo Levi Mitchell.
Williams, a senior, has rushed for 1,458 yards this season and 12 touchdowns on 218 carries. He's averaging 6.7 yards per carry. He also has 8 catches for 52 yards and one TD. Deonte ranks 7th in the FCS in rushing yards and rushing yards per game (132.6).
Williams rushed for 139 yards at Northern Arizona on Saturday to give him ten games this season of 100+ rushing yards, the most in program history. The 5-10, 200 pound Williams is 120 yards shy of James Nobles' single-season mark of 1,578 yards.
The Payton Award will be voted on by a national panel of sports information and media relations directors, broadcasters, writers and other dignitaries following the regular season. The top three vote-getters will be invited to the FCS Awards Banquet and Presentation on Dec. 17 in Philadelphia.
They will be joined at the banquet by the winners of the Buck Buchanan, Jerry Rice and Eddie Robinson awards, which also are presented by The Sports Network. The Buchanan Award honors the FCS defensive player of the year, the Rice Award goes to the FCS freshman of the year and the Robinson Award honors the FCS coach of the year.
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