Even though he won’t be in New York on Friday night for the Heisman Ceremony, or playing in a big time bowl game — or, you know, even a small time bowl game — Travis Hunter’s finally getting the recognition that his incredible season deserved.
Earlier this week, Hunter was named the winner of this year’s Paul Hornung award, given annually to the most versatile player in college football. The award was created in 2010, and prior winners include OBJ (2013), Christian McCaffery (2015), and Saquon Barkley (2017).
Hunter was, more or less, a lock for this year’s award. Despite missing about a quarter of the season with an injury, he still managed to play over 1,000 snaps — 566 on defense, 436 on offense, and 30 on special teams. He averaged over 100 snaps per game, which is really just an insane thing to say out loud. He sat out almost four games!
“Travis is a special player, a generational player, who has changed the game,” Coach Prime said in a statement. “We had to find ways to utilize him to the best of his ability on both sides of the ball, where he could utilize his strengths and be a force. Thank you to the award committee for seeing in Travis what we do, not only that he’s a tremendous player, but also a tremendous person. Travis hasn’t reached his full potential as of yet and his best is still coming!”
According to the Buffs’ team site, Hunter is the ninth CU player ‘to win a major college award,’ joining the likes of, among others, Rashaan Salaam, Mark Mariscal, and Daniel Graham. He’s also the first player since Champ Bailey to have 50+ receptions and three interceptions. He ALSO did this against Nebraska, which doesn’t really have anything to do with this news, but sure is fun to rewatch. Maybe leaving the Pac-12 won’t be so bad after all.