PHILADELPHIA, Pa. (11/1/23) – Arkansas State redshirt-freshman linebacker Javante Mackey was named one of 14 semifinalists for the sixth annual Shaun Alexander Freshman of the Year Award presented to the outstanding freshman player in college football, the Maxwell Football Club Awards announced Wednesday.
The Shaun Alexander Freshman of the Year Award has been presented to the College Freshman Player of the Year since 2018 and is named in honor of Shaun Alexander, a former standout at the University of Alabama and with the Seattle Seahawks in the NFL. The award past winners include; Trevor Lawrence (Clemson) – 2018, Kenneth Gainwell (Memphis) – 2019, Will Anderson Jr. (Alabama) – 2020, Brock Bowers (Georgia) – 2021 and Drake Maye (North Carolina) – 2022.
Mackey is tied for the Sun Belt Conference lead with 39 solo tackles and his 7.9 total tackles per game ranks 10th. Mackey leads A-State with 63 total tackles and is the highest ranked defensive player for the Red Wolves per Pro Football Focus (PFF) ratings. He ranks fourth nationally in PFF rankings with his 80.1 rating among linebackers and 21st among all defensive players with 500 or more snaps played.
The Shaun Alexander Freshman of the Year Award semifinalists incorporates a broad spectrum of FBS programs and conferences from coach to coast. Mackey is one of two nominees from the Group of Five, joined by James Madison cornerback D’Angelo Ponds. He is among three linebackers and 10 defensive players listed as semifinalists.
Finalists for the sixth annual Shaun Alexander Freshman of the Year award will be announced November 29, 2023 and the winner of the award will be revealed on December 27, 2023. The formal presentation of this award will be made at the Maxwell Football Club Awards in March of 2024.
Shaun Alexander Freshman of the Year Award Semifinalists
Nic Anderson – Oklahoma (WR)
Rueben Bain – Miami (DE)
Peyton Bowen – Oklahoma (S)
Parker Brailsford – Washington (OL)
Zachariah Branch – USC (WR)
Kevin Concepcion – NC State (WR)
Caleb Downs – Alabama (S)
Anthony Hill – Texas (LB)
Jalon Kilgore – South Carolina (S)
Javante Mackey – Arkansas State (LB)
T.J. Parker – Clemson (DE)
D’Angelo Ponds – James Madison (CB)
Dillon Thieneman – Purdue (S)
Taurean York – Texas A&M (LB)
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Mackey Named Semifinalist for Shaun Alexander Freshman of the Year Award. Article may or may not reflect the views of KLEK 102.5 FM or The Voice of Arkansas Minority Advocacy Council