The University of Pittsburgh Athletic Department announced on Tuesday that athlete Tyler Boyd was named to his third award watchlist. The sophomore wide receiver was named to the Biletnikoff Award preseason watchlist. The award is given to the most-outstanding receiver in college football.
Last week, Boyd was named to the Maxwell Award watchlist (college football player of the year) and the Paul Hornung Award watchlist, along with teammate, sophomore running back James Conner. Both players join center Artie Rowell (Rimington Trophy) who have been named to an award watch list this summer.
Boyd earned a starting wide receiver spot last year for the Panthers as a true freshman. He caught 85 passes for 1,174 yards (13.8 avg.) and seven touchdowns. It was a freshman record for catches and yardage, surpassing records previously held by former Panther Larry Fitzgerald, who won the Biletnikoff Award while at Pitt.
Boyd capped a spectacular freshman season in style with his performance in the 30-27 win over Bowling Green in the Little Caesars Pizza Bowl. He had 8 catches for a career-high 173 yards (a Pitt bowl record) and returned a punt 54 yards for a touchdown. It was Pitt’s first punt return touchdown since Darrelle Revis returned one 73 yards against West Virginia in 2006.
Besides Fitzgerald, former Panther Antonio Bryant also won the Biletnikoff award. Pitt is one of only four schools to have multiple Biletnikoff Award winners, along with Oklahoma State, Oregon State, and Texas Tech.
The Biletnikoff Award is presented annually by the Tallahassee Quarterback Club Foundation. Any player that catches passes is eligible to win the award. It is named after receiver Fred Biletnikoff who played for the Oakland Raiders from 1965 to 1978. He was an all-American at Florida State in 1964.