TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- Florida State junior Nick O'Leary is one of 37 student-athletes on the Mackey Award Watch List released Tuesday morning.
The Mackey Award is given annually to college football's best tight end.
O'Leary enters his third season in an FSU uniform as the undisputed leader of a talented tight ends corps. The Palm Beach Gardens, Fla. native started 11 games a year ago and registered career highs in receptions (21), yards receiving (252) and touchdowns (three). His 2012 totals were the most yards since 2006 and touchdowns since 1994 among Florida State tight ends.
For his career, O'Leary has played in 26 games and has caught 33 passes for 416 yards and four touchdowns. His totals could see a significant increase in 2013 under the direction of new tight ends coach Tim Brewster, who is widely considered one of the top coaches at that position in the nation.
O'Leary is one of just three scholarship tight ends healthy enough for the upcoming season so his production will be critical for the Seminoles' offense. FSU returns sophomore Christo Kourtzidis and adds true freshman Jeremy Kerr but lost Kevin Haplea to a season-ending injury this off-season and Dan Hicks moved back to defensive end this past spring.
The news of O'Leary's inclusion on the Mackey Award Watch List comes one day after Lamarcus Joyner, Christian Jones and Timmy Jernigan were named to the Bednarik Award Watch List for the nation's top defensive player. Bryan Stork was also named to the Rimington Trophy 2013 Fall Watch List Tuesday.