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Sept. 11, 2007
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - Penn State junior wide receivers Derrick Williams (Greenbelt, Md.) and Deon Butler (Woodbridge, Va.) have been named to the Watch List for the 2007 Biletnikoff Award, presented annually to the nation's top collegiate receiver.
Penn State, Florida, Hawaii and Louisville are the only schools with two players on the 2007 Biletnikoff Award Watch List.
The Nittany Lions' leading receiver in each of the past two seasons, Butler has established himself as one of quarterback Anthony Morelli's favorite targets and one of Penn State¹s top clutch playmakers. A former walk-on cornerback, Butler recorded 48 receptions for 637 yards and two touchdowns in 2006, earning honorable mention All-Big Ten honors. A year ago versus Northwestern, the speedy wideout re-wrote the Penn State record book by totaling 216 receiving yards on 11 receptions in a 33-7 victory.
With 89 career receptions, Butler already ranks 10th on Penn State¹s career receptions list and he is 11th in school career receiving yardage with 1,410. Butler has also been nominated for the 2007 Maxwell Award, presented to the nation¹s top player.
Williams has developed into one of the nation's top offensive and special teams weapons. In 2006, he demonstrated his dynamic talent by rushing for a touchdown, catching a touchdown, and returning a punt for a score and by finishing second on the team in all-purpose yards with 955. Off to a fast start in 2007, Williams displayed his game-breaking skills when he jump started the Nittany Lions with a zig-zagging 78-yard punt return for a first quarter touchdown in their 31-10 victory over Notre Dame last Saturday.
Williams' electric punt return is one of four candidates for this week's Pontiac Game Changing Performance. Fans can cast their vote for the play until 11:59 p.m. on Wednesday at: https://r.espn.go.com/espn/contests/07GameChangingPerformance/index?cmp=ncaafb07voteola
Former Penn State All-America wide receiver Bobby Engram won the inaugural Biletnikoff Award, presented following the 1994 season. Engram, who plays for the Seattle Seahawks, owns 12 school records, including career receptions (167), career receiving yards (3,026), and career receiving touchdowns (31).
Established in 1994, Biletnikoff Award candidates must display leadership and self-discipline, have a significant positive impact on his team¹s success as well as have a desire and commitment to be the best player he can be.
Sponsored by the Tallahassee Quarterback Club (TQC) Foundation, the award is named for Fred Biletnikoff, a standout wide receiver for Florida State University and the National Football League¹s Oakland Raiders. Biletnikoff is the fourth all-time leading receiver in NFL history and is a member of the College and Pro Football Halls of Fame.
Finalists for the Biletnikoff Award will be named in November with the winner to be announced on Dec. 6 on the ESPN College Football Awards Show. More than 50 members of the media and former players will select the winner.
Coach Joe Paterno's No. 12 Nittany Lions (2-0) conclude their three-game homestand when it meets Buffalo on Saturday at 12:00 p.m. in sold out Beaver Stadium. The teams will be meeting for the first time since 1900. Buffalo (1-1) defeated Temple, 42-7, on Saturday.
The Penn State-Buffalo game will be broadcast live on the Big Ten Network. The Big Ten Network is available nationally on Direct TV and DISH Network and nearly 100 cable providers. The official audio broadcast will be available from the Penn State Sports Network as well as on www.GoPSUsports.com, the official website of Penn State Athletics. For more information about the Big Ten Network, go to www.bigtennetwork.com.