[Little Rock, AR]– The 2023 Cliff Harris Award, generously sponsored by Wright Lindsey and Jennings LLP, proudly announces the nominees for this year’s Cliff Harris Award in NCAA Division II. These exceptional athletes have demonstrated extraordinary skill and commitment, earning them nominations for this prestigious honor.

Among the exceptional players in NCAA Division II football, the nominees for the 2023 Cliff Harris Award are:

  1. Isaiah Bigby (JR) – Minot State University
  2. Benari Black (JR) – Johnson C. Smith University
  3. Jamae Blank (JR) – UNC-Pembroke
  4. Daniel Bone III (JR) – Colorado State University Pueblo
  5. Jayden Broughton (JR) – Benedict College
  6. Peyton Buckley (JR) – Augustana (SD) University
  7. Amos Coleman (SR) – Texas A&M-Kingsville
  8. Garrett Cox (JR) – Millersville (Pa.) University
  9. Micah Cretsinger (JR) – Saginaw Valley State University
  10. Aaron Davis (SO) – Wheeling University 
  11. Loobert Denelus (SR) – Benedict College
  12. Dioh Desuah (SR) – Seton Hill University
  13. Willie Drew (SR) – Virginia State
  14. Nick Evans (SR) – University of Charleston (W.Va.)
  15. Marquise Fleming (JR) – Wingate University
  16. Marcus Hansen (SO) – Bemidji State
  17. Jacob Harris (SR) – Valdosta State
  18. Robert Holtz (SR) – Tiffin University
  19. Landon Honeycutt (SO) – Mars Hill University
  20. Andre Jefferson (JR) – Lenoir-Rhyne University
  21. Giye Jenkins (JR) – University of New Haven
  22. Josiah Johnson (JR) – Ouachita Baptist University
  23. Jalen Jones (SR) – West Virginia State University
  24. Hayden Kelly (SR) – University of Texas Permian Basin
  25. Mikael King (SO) – Tuskegee (Ala.) University
  26. Maven Kretche (JR) – Minnesota State-Mankato
  27. Gary Lewis (SO) – Henderson State University
  28. Salvatore Lupoli Jr (JR) – Bentley (Mass.) University
  29. Landry Mavungu (SR) – University of Indianapolis
  30. Christian McCarroll (SR) – Grand Valley State
  31. John McMullen (SR) – University of West Florida
  32. Eddie Miller Garrett (SR) – Ohio Dominican
  33. Rossy Moore (JR) – University of Mount Union
  34. Jackson Myers (SR) – Ashland University
  35. Connor Noble (JR) – West Chester University (Pa.)
  36. Rico Payton (SR) – Pittsburg State University
  37. Andrew Pitts (SO) – Angelo State University
  38. Nolan Reeve (SR) – Colorado School of Mines
  39. Cam Rice (SO) – West Liberty University
  40. Devon Roush (SR) – East Central (Okla.)
  41. Clay Schueffner (SR) – Winona State University
  42. Melvin Smith Jr (JR) – Southern Arkansas University
  43. Shon Stephens (SR) – Ferris State University
  44. Dakari Streeter (SR) – Missouri Western State University
  45. David Tabakovic (SR) – Quincy University (IL)
  46. Tanner Volk (JR) – Central Washington
  47. Nathaniel Wallace (SR) – Harding University
  48. Tyler Whary (SR) – Kutztown University

These nominated athletes have showcased exceptional talent, leadership, and dedication to their teams, leaving an indelible mark on the 2023 NCAA Division II football season.

The recipient of the 2023 Cliff Harris Award for NCAA Division II will be announced on December 28th, 2023, recognizing one exceptional player for their outstanding contributions.

For media inquiries, interviews, or additional information, please contact:

David Bazzel – President, Little Rock Touchdown Club- info@LRTouchdown.comwww.lrtouchdown.com

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About the Cliff Harris Award: The Cliff Harris Award is an annual recognition program dedicated to celebrating exceptional defensive players in small college football. Named after NFL Hall of Famer Cliff Harris, the award acknowledges players who exhibit excellence on and off the field.

The Trophy: One of the most unique awards in all of college football, the $3,000 Cliff Harris Award trophy stands almost two foot tall and weighs 35 pounds. A rare two figurine sports action bronze sculpture, the Cliff Harris Award represents an actual tackle by NFL Hall of Fame and Dallas Cowboy great Cliff Harris, against Harold Jackson of the Los Angeles Rams. What makes this trophy truly exceptional is its intricate design, showcasing extreme angles and attachment points that secure the two bronze players to a three-tier walnut wood base, setting it apart from any other trophy in all levels of college football. Crafted from fourteen distinct bronze pieces, its assembly process ranks among the most intricate and complex in sports awards. Every winner from DII, DIII and NAIA will receive their own Cliff Harris Award trophy.

Sculpted by Raymond Gibby and designed by David Bazzel, this trophy embodies excellence in both craftsmanship and football achievement.

Over the last decade, many of the finalists and winners have continued their outstanding football careers in the National Football League.

  • Pierre Desir (Lindenwood, winner ’13)
  • Malcom Butler (West Alabama, finalist ’13)
  • Marqui Christian (Midwestern State, winner ’15)
  • Matthew Judon (Grand Valley State, finalist ’15)
  • Michael Joeseph (Dubuque, winner ’17)
  • Corey Ballentine (Washburn, winner ’18)
  • Kyle Duggar (Lenoir-Rhyne, winner ’19)
  • Sam Roberts (Northwest Missouri State, winner ’21)
  • Caleb Murphy (Ferris State, winner ’22)

For more information about the Cliff Harris Award and to stay updated on the latest news and developments, please visit https://www.cliffharrisaward.com/.