University of Connecticut senior wide receiver Noel Thomas (Norwalk, CT) has been selected the Walter Camp 2016 Connecticut Player of the Year. The award is presented to the top college football player who is a resident and/or played scholastically in the state of Connecticut. The award is voted on by the Walter Camp Football Foundation membership.
Thomas is the fourth UConn player to earn the honor, and the first two-time recipient Dan Orlovsky (2003 and 2004). Former Huskies Carl Bond (1998) and Glenn Antrum (1988) have also earned Connecticut Player of the Year honors.
A Second Team American Athletic Conference honoree in 2016, Thomas led UConn in receiving with a school record 100 receptions for 1,179 yards. His 1,179 receiving yards was second-highest season total in school history. Thomas ranked fifth in the country in receptions per game at 8.3 and third in the American Athletic Conference. He is also 15th in the country receiving yards per game at 98.3. Thomas has 100-yard receiving performances in seven games (including a period of six-straight) this season and eight in his career.
In addition to his AAC honors, Thomas was also named the winner of the 78th Annual George “Bulger” Lowe Award, known as “New England’s Heisman Trophy” and is one of the oldest college football awards in the country.
For his collegiate career, Thomas had 183 receptions, which is fourth-highest in school history, for 2,235 yards, which ranks eighth all-time.
A native of Norwalk, Thomas played scholastically for his father (Noel, Sr.) at St. Luke’s in New Canaan. In his senior year, Thomas led the team to the NEPSAC Class C title and was named by MSG Varsity as its Connecticut Player of the Year.
Thomas, along with members of the 2016 Walter Camp All-America team, Player of the Year Lamar Jackson (Louisville), and other major award winners (Alumni Award-Orlando Pace; Man of the Year-Warrick Dunn; Distinguished American-Mike Ditka), will be honored at the organization’s national awards banquet, presented by KeyBank, on Saturday, January 14 at the Yale University Commons in New Haven.
Walter Camp, “The Father of American football,” first selected an All-America team in 1889. Camp – a former Yale University athlete and football coach – is also credited with developing play from scrimmage, set plays, the numerical assessment of goals and tries and the restriction of play to eleven men per side. The Walter Camp Football Foundation – a New Haven-based all-volunteer group – was founded in 1967 to perpetuate the ideals of Camp and to continue the tradition of selecting annually an All-America team. Visit www.waltercamp.org for more information.
Connecticut Player of the Year
Presented to the top college football player who is a resident and/or played scholastically in the state of Connecticut. The award is voted on by the Walter Camp Football Foundation membership.
2016 – Noel Thomas, WR, Connecticut
2015 – Tyler Matakevich, LB, Temple
2014 – Tyler Murphy, QB, Boston College
2013 – Kevin Pierre-Louis, LB, Boston College
2012 – Bjoern Werner, DE, Florida State
2011 – Silas Redd, RB, Penn State
2010 – John Moffitt, OL, Wisconsin
2009 – Aaron Hernandez, TE, Florida
2008 – Kory Sheets, RB, Purdue
2007 – Mike McLeod, RB, Yale
2006 – Kory Sheets, RB, Purdue
2005 – John Sullivan, C, Notre Dame
2004 – Anttaj Hawthorne, DT, Wisconsin; Dan Orlovsky, QB, Connecticut
2003 – Dan Orlovsky, QB, Connecticut
2002 – Niko Koutouvides, LB, Purdue
2001 – Dwight Freeney, DE, Syracuse
2000 – Peter Mazza, LB, Yale
1999 – Bobby Myers, DB, Wisconsin
1998 – Carl Bond, RB, Connecticut
1997 – Kyle McIntosh, RB, Syracuse
1996 – Tarek Salah, LB, Wisconsin
1995 – Tarek Salah, LB, Wisconsin
1994 – Jason Miska, LB, Auburn
1993 – Chris Zingo, LB, Cornell
1992 – Curtis Eller, LB, Villanova
1991 – Corey Vincent, DL, Holy Cross
1990 – Rob Thomson, DB, Syracuse
1989 – Terry Wooden, LB, Syracuse
1988 – Glenn Antrum, WR, Connecticut
1987 – Bill Romanowski, LB, Boston College
1986 – Richard Comizio, RB, Pennsylvania
1985 – Tom Patton, DE, Holy Cross
1984 – No recipient
1983 – Steve Young, QB, Brigham Young
1982 – Mike Marshall, DB, Southern Conn.
1981 – Richard Diana, RB, Yale