HSU’s Kyle Jones is a semifinalist for Gagliardi Trophy

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COLLEGEVILLE, Minn. – Hardin-Simmons senior quarterback Kyle Jones has been named one of 15 finalists for the 2021 Gagliardi Trophy, which is given to the top player in Division III and recognizes excellence in athletics, academics and community service.

The award is named after John Gagliardi, Saint John’s legendary Hall of Fame head football coach who passed away at the age of 91 in 2018. John retired in 2012 with 489 career victories, the most in college football history.

Jones led the Cowboys to a 9-1 record and he threw for 2446 yards and 26 touchdowns with just four interceptions. He finished his career as the most efficient quarterback in school history.

He is the eighth Cowboy (a total of nine times) to be named a semifinalist for the award since 2000.

The Gagliardi Trophy finalists will be announced during a live show on Thursday, Dec. 9, on www.D3football.com. Hosts Pat Coleman and Frank Rossi will profile the finalists during the program. The 2021 Gagliardi Trophy winner will be revealed on D3football.com during the week of the NCAA Division III football national championship on Friday, Dec. 17 at 7 p.m. CT. In the lead up to the announcement of the 2021 Gagliardi Trophy winner, D3football.com and the J-Club Twitter account (@ JClubSJU) will provide updates on specific dates and times of the announcement.

The trophy design features a sculpture of Gagliardi and a player, representing the teacher-coach and the student-athlete in a one-on-one sideline consultation. Hand-cast in bronze on a polished wood base, the trophy stands nearly two feet tall and weighs approximately 64 pounds. The words “The Gagliardi Trophy presented by Jostens & J-Club” are printed on the acrylic panel behind the figures. The words “Division III 2019 Player of the Year” and “Honoring Excellence in Football, Academics and Community Service” are etched on two panels below the figures.

The J-Club and Jostens did not award the Gagliardi Trophy in 2020 as NCAA Division III football did not have a traditional fall season. North Central College (Ill.) quarterback Broc Rutter was the 27th and most recent recipient of the award in 2019.

Nominations were submitted by colleges across the country, and the semifinalists were selected by the J-Club Board of Directors. In past years, up to fifteen semifinalists have been named. The Gagliardi Trophy national-selection committee is comprised of 16 Division III coaches (four from each NCAA Region), four Division III administrators, eight regional notable voters (two from each region, and eight National voters with Division III backgrounds. A fan vote, which runs until Dec. 3, will be live soon on D3football.com. No J-Club members vote as part of the national-selection committee.

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