Linebacker Brock Coyle and quarterback Jordan Johnson were named the University of Montana's 2013 Steve Carlson Award co-winners, which is given annually to the team's Most Valuable Player(s).
Montana's football team awards were presented by Griz head football coach Mick Delaney and his staff this afternoon (Sunday, Dec. 8) at the squad's annual awards banquet at the Doubletree Hotel.
Coyle, a senior from Bozeman, led the Grizzlies in tackles this season with 125. He was UM's defensive team co-captain this year. He is ranked among the national leaders In tackles, averaging 9.6 per game. Coyle is ranked ninth in the nation in forced fumbles at .33 a game. He was a second team All-Big Sky Conference pick. He second on the team with 13.5 tackles for loss.
Johnson, a junior from Eugene, Ore., was 220-of-388-5 passing for 3,387 yards and 32 touchdowns this season. He is the 11th played in school history to pass for more than 3,000 yards in a season. His 32 touchdown passes this year tie him for the fourth most in single-season history, while his 3,387 passing yards are the sixth most ever in a season. Johnson, UM's team-co-captain on offense, was a third-team all-league selection.
Wide receiver Ellis Henderson, a sophomore from Portland, Oregon, was chosen the recipient of the Terry Dillon Award (outstanding back or receiver). Henderson had team-highs of 43 for 1,008 yards and 14 touchdowns. He is the 12th player in school history to have more than 1,000 receiving yards in a season. His 14 touchdown grabs tie him for the fourth most in single-season history. He was a second team all-conference pick at wide receiver and as a returner.
Danny Kistler Jr. was recognized as Montana's outstanding offensive lineman for the second season in a row, receiving Paul Weskamp Award. A three-year starter, Kistler, a senior tackle from Seattle, Wash., was a first team All-Big Sky selection for the second straight season in 2013. He was the Grizzlies' offensive co-captain along with Johnson. He is also a two-time All-America pick.
For the second consecutive season, local product Zack Wagenmann, a junior defensive end from Missoula, was tabbed UM's outstanding defensive lineman, and was presented the Larry Miller Award. Wagenmann is ranked among the FCS leaders with 16.5 tackles for loss. He was fifth on the team with 64 tackles, and had a team-best 8.5 sacks. In 2013, Wagenmann was tabbed first team all-league for the second season in a row.
Linebacker John Paul (J.P.) Kanongata'a was selected as the team's hardest hitter, receiving the Golden Helmet Award. A three-year starter from Bellevue, Wash., he was the Grizzlies' fourth leading tackler with 88 stops, and also had 5.0 sacks and 10.0 tackles for loss). He was a first team All-Big Sky pick as a senior.
Linebacker Kendrick Van Ackeren, a sophomore from Bellevue, Wash. was named the Grizzlies' "Special Teams Player of the Year." Van Ackeren was Montana's 14th leading tackler with 29 stops, and several of those stops were on kickoff and punt coverage teams.
The Tony Barbour Award, which goes to the player who "best exemplifies the values and work ethic of Grizzly football," was given to defensive end Tyrone Holmes. A sophomore Eagle Point, Ore., Holmes was UM's 13th leading tackler with 37 stops, and he was also ranked among the team leaders in sacks (4.0) and TFLs (6.0). He was an honorable mention all-league selection.
Linebacker Jordan Tripp was voted the recipient of the Pat Norwood Award, which goes to the team's "Most Inspirational Player". The Missoula native was second on the team with 100 tackles, and tied for the team lead with three interceptions. He was a first team All-Big Sky and All-America selection for the second straight season in 2013. Tripp has served as the Grizzlies' co-captain on defense the past two seasons.
The "Scout Team Player of the Year" on offense was redshirt freshman quarterback Makena Simis, from Boise, Idaho (Capital High School). The "Scout Team Player of the Year" on defense was redshirt freshman linebacker Tucker Schye, from Malta, Montana (Malta HS).