Punter Richie Leone Named to Ray Guy Award Preseason Watch List
July 11, 2012
HOUSTON - University of Houston junior punter Richie Leone was one of 25 players nationally to be named to the preseason watch list for the 2012 Ray Guy Award, presented annually to the nation's top collegiate punter.
A year ago, Leone was an All-Conference USA Honorable Mention at his position and earned a place as a semifinalist for the Ray Guy Award. The Roswell, Ga., native averaged more than 41 yards per punt and enjoyed eight games where he averaged higher than 40 yards per kick.
Leone (who last name is pronounced Lee-O-Nee) booted 12 punts of longer than 50 yards and downed 15 kicks inside the 20-yard line with another 18 punts fair caught. He nailed a career-long 63-yard kick in the Cougars' win at North Texas.
In addition to his punting duties, Leone also handled the Cougars' kickoff duties, posting an average of 63.5 yards per kickoff with five touchbacks.
Leone is the second Cougar to be named to a preseason watch list this summer. Junior running back Charles Sims was named to the watch list for the Maxwell Award, given to the nation's top collegiate football player.
A complete list of candidates will be released on Oct. 26. In early November, the Ray Guy Award committee will meet to select the ten semifinalists, who will be announced on Nov. 9.
A national body of Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) sports information directors, coaches, media representatives, and previous Ray Guy Award winners will then vote for the top three finalists, to be announced on Nov. 19.
After the finalists are named, the voting body will cast ballots again to select the nation's top punter. The winner will be announced live during The Home Depot College Football Awards airing on ESPN on Thursday, December 6.
Houston Football season tickets are on sale now in the Athletics Ticket Office, and fans have options for as low as $140 when purchasing.
To purchase season tickets, fans can call 713-GO-COOGS (462-6647) or 877-COUGAR-5 (268-4275) or visit the Athletics Ticket Office, located on the first floor of the Athletics/Alumni Center from 8 a.m., to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday.
Fans can buy season tickets 24 hours a day, seven days a week, by clicking the Red and White Tickets tab at UHCougars.com and following the appropriate links or by clicking here.
ABOUT THE COUGARS
A year ago, the Cougars posted a 13-1 mark to set a school single-season record in wins and capped the campaign with a dominating 30-14 win against No. 22 Penn State during the TicketCity Bowl.
Running back Charles Sims led the Cougars in 2011 with 821 rushing yards and nine touchdowns. The electrifying junior also was a receiving threat out of the backfield, hauling in 51 catches for 575 yards and four scores to rank fourth on the team.
Sophomore linebacker Derrick Mathews finished second among the Cougars with 106 tackles during his first collegiate season, while senior linebacker Phillip Steward led the team with six interceptions and added 77 tackles.
After sitting out as a redshirt a year ago, sophomore quarterback David Piland will take the reins from NCAA record-setting signal-caller Case Keenum. Starting most of the 2010 season, Piland threw for 2,641 yards and 14 touchdowns on 201-of-345 passing during his true freshman season.