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UConn football awards announced. The Press Release.

POSTED December 11, 2018
BY Timothy W. Gaffney
Twitter: @TimothyGaffney

STORRS, Conn. - The UConn football team announced its annual team awards on Sunday evening and senior quarterback David Pindell was honored as the team’s Most Valuable Player and Offensive Player of the Year.


“David had a tremendous impact on our offense this year,” offensive coordinator John Dunn said.  “With his hard work, he was able to give our offense a chance to be productive every game. He deserves everything he has earned and is a great example that with hard work and dedication you can maximize your skills.”


Pindell was the starting quarterback for all 12 of UConn’s games and his 1,139 rushing yards were the most by a QB in team history.  He posted 3,117 yards of total offense during his senior season, which was third in UConn single-season history and he rushed for at least 100-yards in six games.


Senior linebacker Santana Sterling was selected as the Defensive Player of the Year after seeing action in all 12 games.  Sterling was second on the team with 80 tackles and his 7.0 tackles for loss led the squad.  For his efforts, Sterling was also presented with the Jasper T. Howard Award for best exemplifying Howard’s famous credo of “play every play like it’s the last play you’ll ever play.”


“To play your hardest on a given play takes focus, precision, intensity and fanatical effort,” linebackers coach Jon Wholley said.  “To do it on EVERY play takes mental toughness, persistence, pride, and passion.  Santana is a deserving winner of the 2018 Jasper Howard “Play Every Play Like It’s Your Last” and Defensive Player of the Year awards, because he approaches each day with those characteristics.  Regardless of the circumstances, Santana continually gives his best on the practice field and in the games. His effort will serve as the example as we work to restore our blue collar work ethic.”


Redshirt freshman punter Luke Magliozzi was named Special Teams Player of the Year after he set the UConn single-season record with a punting average of 42.94 yards per punt.  He ended the season with 12 punts over 50 yards and 19 of his kicks resulted in the opposing team beginning a drive inside their own 20-yard line.

“I couldn’t be happier for Luke to be named our Special Teams Player of the year,” special teams coordinator Eddie Allen said.  “It was well earned. He has worked incredibly hard to put himself in the position to be successful and we are all excited for what the future holds for Luke.”


Quarterback Brandon Bisack took home the John L. Toner Scholar Athlete Award, recognizing a senior member of the program that has demonstrated outstanding academic performance and citizenship while making a significant contribution to the overall success of the team.


Redshirt senior center Ryan Crozier was honored as the Joseph M. Giannelli Unsung Hero Award after he started all 12 games in the middle of UConn’s offensive line and helped the Huskies produce a pair of 1,000-yard rushers for the first time since 2009. 


Senior wide receiver Kyle Buss earned the Kendall Madison Award, which is given to a strong player whose dedication, hard work and outstanding citizenship best exemplify the strong spirit of the UConn Huskies.  


Buss saw action in all 12 games and started eight times.  He led UConn with 482 receiving yards on 32 catches, including three touchdowns.


“Kyle is everything you want in a team member,” said wide receivers coach Aaron Smith.  “He is a handworker, competitive and dedicated to doing whatever he can to help make the team successful. Kyle shows up every day ready to work and get better. He is willing to do whatever it takes for the team. Probably his best attribute is that he loves the game of football and being part of something bigger than himself. Through ups and downs he can be counted on to show up and give it everything he has. His work ethic and dedication are what being a UConn Husky is all about.”


Senior tight end Aaron McLean was presented with the Brian Kozlowski Award, which is earned by the player who is the most courageous, hardworking and productive on the team.


McLean played in all 12 games and caught 32 passes for 396 yards and two touchdowns.   


“Aaron gave his all and epitomized the character of the Brian Kozlowski,” tight ends coach Corey Edsall said.  “Aaron grew into his role with the program from switching positions and having an impact on the offense this season. I am proud of Aaron’s growth and impact in our program with his examples of hard work.”


Finally, redshirt junior Matt Peart was chosen as the winner of the Alumni Award, which is presented to a senior who is the manifestation of the ultimate team player.

Peart started all 12 games at right tackle and helped the Huskies produce a pair of 1,000-yard rushers for the first time since 2009.


“Matt is the ultimate team player,” offensive line coach Frank Giufre said.  “He comes to work every day and he gives his all. He comes ready day in and day out and it shows in his performance on the field.”

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