2018 CUSA Awards
CUSA MVP: BRENT STOCKSTILL, QB, MIDDLE TENNESSEE STATE
Middle Tennessee graduate QB Brent Stockstill is the recipient of the C-USA Most Valuable Player Award. Stockstill leads C-USA in completions (301) and touchdown passes (28) this season, ranking fourth in the FBS in completion percentage (70.5) and 15th nationally with 3,214 passing yards. He has thrown multiple scores in seven straight games and nine total outings on the year, topping the 300-yard mark in passing four times. He’s also tied for 20th all-time in the NCAA in touchdown passes (105), and the owner of virtually every passing record in school history.
DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR: JAYLON FERGUSON, LOUISIANA TECH
In 2018, Louisiana Tech’s Jaylon Ferguson passed Terrell Suggs (Arizona State) to become the NCAA all-time sack leader with 45 career sacks. He leads the FBS with 17.5 sacks in 2018, while ranking second nationally with 26 tackles for loss. Ferguson broke his own school record for single-season sacks, which he set in 2016 with 14.5. A four-time all-conference selection, he has recorded 64 total tackles this season, including 37 solo stops, while he has also recorded nine quarterback hurries, three pass breakups and two forced fumbles.
OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR: MASON FINE, NORTH TEXAS
North Texas junior Mason Fine becomes the fifth player in C-USA history to be named Offensive Player of the Year multiple times, winning the honor for the second straight season. He ranks eighth in the FBS in passing yards (3,743) and is eighth in the FBS in passing yards per game (311.2) through 12 games. Fine has completed 295-of-457 passes (64.6%) for 3,743 yards and 27 touchdowns with only five interceptions. He topped the 300-yard mark five times and the 400-yard mark twice, while throwing for 240 or more in all but one outing. Fine, who also had a pair of rushing scores, threw multiple touchdowns in 10 games while becoming the all-time leading passer in program history in less than three full seasons (9,358 yards).
SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYER OF THE YEAR: JACK FOX, P, RICE
Fox led C-USA in punting for the second consecutive year, finishing with a career-best 45.5 average. His average was second best in the nation among punters with at least 60 punts in the regular season and ranked 8th nationally among all punters. He topped the FBS with 3,636 punting yards in the regular season, which also set a school record. He had 26 punts of 50 yards or longer and he placed 31 punts inside the 20-yard line, both top figures in the conference.
FRESHMAN OF THE YEAR: CHRIS ROBINSON, QB, FLORIDA ATLANTIC and ISAIAH GREEN, QB, MARSHALL
Robison played in all 12 games for the Owls, completing 63.2 percent of his passes (192-of-304) for 2,533 yards. He threw 12 touchdowns and rushed for three scores. Robison was named C-USA Offensive Player of the Week on Sept. 10 after he set a school record with 471 passing yards and tossed three TDs in a win over Air Force.
Green placed fourth in C-USA with an average of 248.7 passing yards per game. He has thrown at least one touchdown pass in all nine games he has played (eight starts), totaling 15. Green has five games with multiple TD tosses, with a season-high three in a win over Eastern Kentucky.
NEWCOMER OF THE YEAR: JAMES MORGAN, QB, FLORIDA INTERNATIONAL
Morgan, a junior graduate transfer from Bowling Green, started every game under center for the Panthers. He threw for a school-record 26 touchdowns and 2,764 yards, which ranks second in a FIU single season. He lead C-USA in passer efficiency rating (157.6) and passing yards per attempt (8.4). Morgan had a season-best 341-yard passing yards and set a school-record with four touchdown passes against Arkansas-Pine Bluff in late September.
COACH OF THE YEAR: RICK STOCKSTILL, MIDDLE TENNESSEE STATE
After leading his team to an East Division title and a school-record fourth consecutive bowl appearance, Middle Tennessee head coach Rick Stockstill has been named Conference USA Coach of the Year, as voted on by the league’s 14 head coaches. Stockstill has led MT to an 8-5 record this season and bowl against Appalachian State. The Blue Raiders also played in and hosted the C-USA Championship game for the first time. Middle Tennessee was picked by conference media members in the preseason to finish third in the East Division, but it defied those odds by finishing with a 7-1 league record and its first division title.