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Jeff Huehn/UTSA Athletics
Football

Dean tabbed for Ray Guy Award Watch List

AUGUSTA, Ga. — UTSA senior punter Lucas Dean has been named to the Ray Guy Award Watch List for the fourth straight season, the Augusta Sports Council announced on Wednesday.
 
Dean is one of 50 candidates, including one of three from the American Athletic Conference, who earned a spot on the preseason watch list for the award that honors the nation's top punter.
 
A three-time all-conference selection and 2020 All-American, Dean is entering his fifth season as the Roadrunners' punter. The Australian owns school records for career punting average (44.0), single-season punting average (46.0) and longest punt (76).
 
Last year, Dean averaged 45.0 yards on 41 punts with a long of 76 yards. He pinned opponents inside their 20-yard line 19 times, had 14 punts of 50-plus yards, induced 10 fair catches and surrendered an average of only 3.9 yards per return en route to second-team All-Conference USA accolades.
 
Dean was a second-team all-conference pick in 2021 after posting a 45.2-yard average with 10 punts of 50-plus yards and 21 inside the 20. The year prior, he was the C-USA Special Teams Player of the Year, a second-team All-American by the Sporting News and a fourth-team honoree from Phil Steele. He set the program standard with a 46.0 punting average and had 21 punts of 50-or-more yards and 27 that were inside the 20.
 
The Augusta Sports Council created the Ray Guy Award in 2000 to honor Thomson, Georgia, native and College and Pro Football Hall of Fame inductee, Ray Guy. Among the statistics used to identify the winner is net punting average, number of times punt is downed or kicked out of bounds inside the opponents 20-yard line, total yardage punted, average returned yardage and percentage of punts not returned with particular emphasis placed on net punting average. The winner must display team leadership, self-discipline and have a positive impact on the team's success.
 
The number of eligible candidates for this season will grow when the award opens nominations on Aug. 3. The complete list of candidates will be released on Nov. 6. In mid-November, the Ray Guy Award committee will meet to select the 10 semifinalists. A national body of Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) sports information directors, media representatives and previous Ray Guy Award winners will then vote for the top three finalists to be announced on Nov. 22. 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 in December.
 
Under the direction of two-time conference coach of the year Jeff Traylor, the Roadrunners are coming off an 11-3 campaign that saw them capture their second straight Conference USA crown and play in a bowl game for the third year in a row. UTSA has been ranked in the top 25 in each of the last two seasons and boasts a combined 23 wins over that span, the fourth-best total among all FBS teams behind only Georgia (29), Michigan (25) and Alabama (24).
 
The Roadrunners have been picked to finish second in the AAC Preseason Media Poll and will kick off their 13th season of play on Saturday, Sept. 2, when they travel to Houston to face the Cougars at 6 p.m. at TDECU Stadium. 
 
UTSA will face Texas State for the home opener at 2:30 p.m. the following Saturday at the Alamodome. The Roadrunners will host Army at 6 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 15, UAB on Oct. 14, East Carolina on Oct. 28, Rice on Nov. 11 and South Florida at 8 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 17.
 
Season and single-game tickets are on sale now by calling 210-458-UTSA (8872) or visiting goUTSA.com/tickets
 
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