Chris Rodriguez named to CFPA 2021 National Performer of the Year watch list

Article written by:On3 imageZack Geoghegan


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<small>Photo by UK Athletics</small>

Photo by UK Athletics

Not only is C-Rod one of the best running backs in the country, but he’s also one of the best players in the country–full stop.

If you ask the College Football Performance Awards (CFPA), the organization would tell you that Kentucky Football running back Chris Rodriguez is one of the top 42 college players in the nation. Earlier on Wednesday, CFPA announced that Rodriguez had been named to its National Performer of the Year Trophy preseason watch list, which is comprised of the 42 best college football players heading into the 2021 season.

The award is meant to honor the nation’s top overall player, regardless of position. The winner will be unveiled on January 12, 2022.

After a spectacular junior season in 2020 for Rodgriguez, where he recorded 785 rushing yards and 11 touchdowns despite missing two games due to COVID-19 protocol, the 5-foot-11 tailback is one of the most powerful rushers out there. His most impressive stat from last season was when he went 105 carries in a row without being tackled behind the line of scrimmage. Rodriguez also led the entire SEC in yards per attempt at 6.6.

Other players of note who made the watch list were Louisville QB Malik Cunningham, Auburn QB Bo Nix, Georgia QB J.T. Daniels, South Carolina RB Kevin Harris, and Texas A&M RB Isaiah Spiller.

The preseason recognition from CFPA is one of several that the Georgia native has received this summer. Rodriguez is on the Maxwell Award watch list (nation’s most outstanding player) and the Doak Walker Award watch list (nation’s top running back) while also being named as a preseason second-team All-SEC player by Athlon Sports and a third-team All-SEC performer by Phil Steele. Pro Football Focus tabbed C-Rod as a preseason honorable mention All-American.

Past recipients of the CFPA National Performer of the Year Trophy have included Mac Jones (2020), Joe Burrow (2019), Tua Tagovailoa (2018), and several others dating back to 2008. The only former Kentucky Wildcat who has received an honor from CFPA was Danny Trevathan back in 2011 when he won the Linebacker Trophy.

[UK Athletics]

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