Nebraska senior receiver De’Mornay Pierson-El has been named to the watch list for the 2017 Paul Hornung Award presented by Texas Roadhouse.
The Paul Hornung Award is in its eight season and is given annually to the most versatile player in college football by the Louisville Sports Commission. This marks the second time Pierson-El has been named to the Hornung Award Watch List after also being on the preseason list before the 2015 season.
In addition to being one of Nebraska’s top returning receivers, Pierson-El possesses electrifying play-making ability as a punt returner. The 5-9, 195-pound Pierson-El is an excellent fit in Coach Mike Riley’s versatile offense, and the Maryland native has also been used as a running threat.
Pierson-El had a productive 2016 campaign both as a receiver and return man, but was still slowed by a major knee injury he suffered during the 2015 season. In 2017, Pierson-El hopes to recapture the game-breaking style that earned him All-America honors as a punt returner as a true freshman in 2014. Pierson-El was named a second-team All-America selection and a freshman All-American by several organizations. He was a second-team Football Writers Association of America honoree, becoming the first Husker freshman to make the FWAA All-America team.
Pierson-El enters his senior season with 686 receiving yards and is in position to join the Huskers’ 1,000-yard receiving club. He also has 812 career punt return yards to rank fifth in school history and just 188 yards from becoming the third player in NU history with 1,000 punt return yards. Pierson-El has eight career returns of at least 25 yards.
Watch lists for major college football awards will continue to be announced for the remainder of this week.