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UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - Senior tight end Mike Gesicki (Manahawkin, N.J.) is among the eight semifinalists for the John Mackey Award. The Mackey Award is given annually to the most outstanding collegiate tight end.
The award is named after NFL Hall of Fame member John Mackey, who is considered to be the best to have played the tight end position. The finalists will be announced Monday, Nov. 20 and the award will be announced Wednesday, Dec. 6 and presented at the Home Depot College Football Awards Thursday, Dec. 7.
Gesicki, who was named a midseason All-American by Sports Illustrated, has caught a pass in 24-straight games. He has been highly productive this season with 22 of his 42 catches this season going to first downs or touchdowns. Gesicki ranks tied for eighth in the Big Ten in receptions per game with 4.2. He is also 70th in FBS and 10th in the Big Ten with five receiving touchdowns. Gesicki was named to the Pro Football Focus Big Ten Team of the Week honors on Sept. 12 after catching two touchdown passes vs. Pittsburgh. He caught a touchdown pass in five-straight games from Nov. 26, 2016-Sept. 9, 2017, including multiple touchdown grabs in the first two games of 2017.
The native of Manahawkin, New Jersey broke the Penn State record for receptions by a tight end, surpassing Andrew Quarless’ 87 catches from 2006-09. Gesicki has 114 grabs in his career, which ranks 10th in Penn State history. He is also closing in on the Penn State record for receiving yards by a tight end with 1,337 yards to rank 19th in program history. He needs 6 yards to tie the Penn State mark for a tight end, which was set by Ted Kwalick from 1966-68. Gesicki has also set the mark for touchdown catches in a season (5) and career (11) for a Nittany Lion tight end. In addition, he owns the single-season record for receptions by a tight end with 48 in 2016, passing Andrew Quarless (41; 2009), and yardage by a tight end at 679 in 2016, besting Mickey Shuler’s single-season record of 600 receiving yards (1977). Gesicki joins teammates Saquon Barkley and DaeSean Hamilton as the second RB/WR/TE trio to eclipse 1,000 career receiving yards in Big Ten history (Purdue, 1982-85: WR Steve Griffin, 2,234 yards; RB Rodney Carter, 1,814 yards; TE Marty Scott, 1,247 yards).
The No. 13/11-ranked Nittany Lions host Nebraska Saturday at 4 p.m. on FS1 for Senior Day presented by the Penn State Alumni Association and the annual Penn State Stripe Out. The game can also be heard on GoPSUsports.com and the Penn State Sports Network (airtime 2:30 p.m.).
Tickets for the home finale of the 2017 Penn State football season presented by PSECU against Nebraska are available. For information on joining the Nittany Lion Club and purchasing new 2018 season tickets, as well as club seating in Beaver Stadium, fans can visit www.PSUnrivaled.com, call 1-800-NITTANY weekdays from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. or visit the Bryce Jordan Center ticket office weekdays from 9 a.m-4:30 p.m. More than 9,000 new season tickets have been sold and the season ticket allotment for 2017 has been exhausted.