Arizona State senior kicker Zane Gonzalez was named the winner of the Lou Groza Award on Thursday. The honor is given to the nation’s top place-kicker.
Gonzalez, who became the highest-scoring kicker in FBS history earlier this year, won the award over Auburn’s Daniel Carlson and Georgia Southern’s Younghoe Koo.
This season, he connected on 23 of 25 field-goal attempts (92 percent), including 7 of 9 from 50 yards or more. Gonzalez also made the longest field goal recorded in FBS this season when he hit a 59-yard kick against Colorado.
The Sun Devils heavily relied on Gonzalez’s consistency on kickoffs throughout the season, with 75.6 percent of his resulting in touchbacks (fifth-best rate in the country, according to cfbstats.com).
During his four-year career, Gonzalez made 96 of 116 field goal attempts (82.8 percent), totaling 494 points in 41 games.
The Deer Park, Texas native is the first ASU player to receive a national award given for outstanding play since former place-kicker Thomas Weber won the Groza Award in 2007.
Prior to them, Terrell Suggs collected the Ted Hendricks Award (best defensive end), Rotary Lombardi Award (best defensive lineman or linebacker), and Bronko Nagurski Trophy (best defensive player) in 2002.
Gonzalez will participate in the 2017 Reese’s Senior Bowl in Mobile, Ala., on Jan. 28.