CHICAGO - Saint Xavier University senior Tom Lynch (Frankfort, Ill./Southern Illinois University/Joliet JC/Lincoln-Way East) was recently named one of 42 college football placekickers in the nation to be recognized for his excellence both on the football field and in the community over the month of September. The kickers represent every division of college football except for the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) with 11 of the honorees hailing from Football Championship Series (FCS) schools, 18 from the NCAA Division II ranks, eight out of NCAA Division III, two from the NAIA and three from the NJCAA. Lynch was also included on the Fred Mitchell Award Preseason Watch List that was released back in August.
"The place-kickers we recognize are having tremendous success on the gridiron so far this season," said Chris Kearney, the Fred Mitchell Award's Selection Committee Chairman. "In addition, their civic and volunteer activities are having a profound and positive impact in their communities. We are delighted to honor this group."
Lynch is currently leading SXU in scoring with 54 points and has made nine of his 10 field goal attempts, including a 50-yarder, and all 27 extra-point attempts. He has reached double-digit point totals in a number of games already this season, including 13 points in the opener against Olivet Nazarene University on September 3. Saint Xavier has been the NAIA's No. 1 ranked team over the last four NAIA Football Top 25 Polls and has a perfect 5-0 record. Lynch volunteers his time with Misericordia in Chicago and served as a summer camp at South Bridge Community Church in Orland Park.
The annual Fred Mitchell Outstanding Place-Kicker Award (also known as the Fred Mitchell Award, www.fredmitchellaward.com) is provided to the nation's top collegiate place-kicker among more than 750 FCS, Division II, III, NAIA and NJCAA football teams. The Award is named for Fred Mitchell, the record-setting placekicker, Wittenberg University Athletic Hall of Famer, author, philanthropist and Chicago Tribune sports columnist. The recipient of the Fred Mitchell Award will be chosen based on excellence on the football field and in the community. The Award's Watch List is released in August, top performers are recognized monthly during the college football season, and the winner (who is not required to be on the Watch List) is announced in mid-December. The school of the Award winner receives scholarship funds and the Fred Mitchell Award trophy will be presented on February 20, 2012 at the National Football Foundation Chicago Metro Chapter Awards Ceremony at Halas Hall.