FLORENCE — A total of 34 student-athletes from across the nation have been nominated for the 2017 Harlon Hill Trophy as the Division II College Football Player of the Year.
The list of candidates was announced Monday morning by the National Harlon Hill Award Committee.
The list includes players from each of the four Division II Super Regions.
Players are nominated and voted on by the sports information directors at the 169 NCAA Division II football-playing institutions. The 34 initial candidates will be placed on regional ballots and the top two players from each of the four NCAA regions will advance to the national ballot when regional voting concludes on November 27.
There are 10 nominees from Super Region 1, seven from Super Region 2, nine from Super Region 3 and eight from Super Region 4.
The winner of the 2017 award will be announced on Friday, December 15 via a webcast and the winner will be honored at a luncheon on the University of North Alabama campus on January 5, 2018.
The Hill Trophy is supported by the City of Florence, Ala., the University of North Alabama, Herff Jones and the Marriott Shoals Hotel and Spa.
Candidates are initially nominated by the sports information directors at their respective schools and are then voted on by the SIDs in those Super Regions. The winner is then determined in a nation-wide vote of the Division II sports information directors. The group of 34 candidates includes 13 running backs, 12 quarterbacks, four receivers and five defenders.
There are 17 seniors nominated and 17 underclassmen.


North Dakota State quarterback Jeff Bentrim won the initial Hill Trophy in 1986, followed by the three-time winner – Texas A&I (now Texas A&M-Kingsville) running back Johnny Bailey – in 1987, 1988 and 1989.
Another North Dakota State quarterback, Chris Simdorn, claimed the 1990 award, followed by Pittsburg State receiver Ronnie West in 1991, Pittsburg State running back Ronald Moore in 1992, New Haven running back Roger Graham in 1993, Valdosta State quarterback Chris Hatcher in 1994.
North Alabama linebacker Ronald McKinnon became the first and so far only defensive player to win the award in 1995, followed by Truman State running back Jarrett Anderson in 1996, Bloomsburg University running back Irvin Sigler in 1997, Emporia State running back Brian Shay in 1998 and Northern Colorado quarterback Corte McGuffey in 1999.
The award had its second two-time winner when Valdosta State quarterback Dusty Bonner claimed the Hill Trophy in 2000 and 2001.
Grand Valley State quarterback Curt Anes won the Hill Trophy in 2002, followed by North Alabama quarterback Will Hall in 2003, Colorado School of Mines quarterback Chad Friehauf in 2004 and East Stroudsburg’s Jimmy Terwilliger in 2005. Four straight Hill Trophies were won by running backs, beginning with Chadron State’s Danny Woodhead in 2006 and 2007. Abilene Christian’s Bernard Scott won in 2008, followed by Wayne State (Mich.) running back Joique Bell in 2009.
Central Missouri quarterback Eric Czerniewski was the 2010 Hill winner, followed by Mars Hill running back Jonas Randolph in 2011, Shippensburg’s Zach Zulli in 2012, Bloomsburg running back Franklyn Quiteh in 2013, Ferris State quarterback Jason Vander Laan in 2014 and 2015 and Colorado School of Mines quarterback Justin Dvorak in 2016. .

Harlon Hill Timeline

November 27 – Regional voting concludes

November 30 – National Finalists are announced

December 9 – National voting concludes

December 15 – 2017 Harlon Hill Trophy winner will be announced

January 5, 2018 – Harlon Hill Trophy presented at a luncheon at the University of North Alabama

2017 Harlon Hill Trophy Nominees

SUPER REGIONAL 1 Pos Ht Wt Cl School Hometown
Jaymar Anderson TB 6-1 225 JR East Stroudsburg Philadelphia, Pa.
Walter Fletcher RB 5-9 191 SO Edinboro Columbia, Md.
Luke Hrapchak LB 6-2 240 SR California, Pa. Fairmont, W.V.
Connor Jessop QB 6-5 220 SR Shepherd Ashburn, Va.
Marc Jones RB 5-11 225 JR Gannon Painesville, Ohio
Marcus Martin DE 6-2 255 SR Slippery Rock West Mifflin, Pa.
Grant Russell QB 6-4 225 SR Ohio Dominican Newark, Ohio
Dauoda Sylla RB 5-9 210 SR Findlay Ypsilanti, Mich.
Lenny Williams, Jr. QB 5-11 202 JR IUP McKees Rocks, Pa.
Ryan Zapoticky QB 6-1 205 SR Shippensburg Dallas, Pa.

SUPER REGIONAL 2 Pos Ht Wt Cl School Hometown
Trenton Cannon RB 5-11 185 SR Virginia State Hampton, Va.
Amir Hall QB 6-4 180 JR Bowie State Bowie, Md.
Devontae Jackson RB/KR 5-8 171 JR West Georgia Marietta, Ga.
Kyle Kitchens LB 6-2 205 SR Catawba Decatur, Ga.
Lawrence Pittman RB 6-2 225 SR Wingate Charlotte, N.C.
Chris Robinson RB 5-9 196 SR Delta State Bude, Miss.
Harry Satterwhite QB 6-1 182 JR West Alabama Mobile, Ala.

SUPER REGIONAL 3 Pos Ht Wt Cl School Hometown
Brook Bolles QB 6-3 190 JR Central Missouri Lincoln, Neb.
Drew Harris WR/RB 5-10 185 JR Ouachita Baptist Benton, Ark.
Kenneth Iheme RB 5-8 180 SR Fort Hays State Wichita, Kan.
Deshawn Jones RB 5-9 185 SO Missouri S&T Olympia Fields, Ill.
J.T. Luper WR 5-9 175 SR Central Oklahoma Sherman, Texas
Jake Purichia QB 6-0 207 JR Indianapolis Indianapolis, Ind.
Barrett Renner QB 6-3 206 JR Southern Arkansas Rowlett, Texas
Zach Sieler DE 6-6 290 JR Ferris State Pinckney, Mich.
Travis Tarnowski QB 5-11 218 SR Ashland Broadview Heights, Ohio

SUPER REGIONAL 4 Pos Ht Wt Cl School Hometown
Dennis Gardeck LB 6-0 230 SR Sioux Falls Lake in the Hills, Ill.
Ja’Quan Gardner RB 5-7 205 SR Humboldt State Ceres, Calif.
Chad Hovasse WR 6-1 215 JR Adams State Colorado Springs, Colo.
Cameron Mayberry RB 5-11 200 SO Colorado-Mines Stillwater, Okla.
Luis Perez QB 6-3 220 SR Texas A&M-Commerce Chula Vista, Calif.
Layton Rabb QB 6-5 225 JR Midwestern State Llano, Texas
Paul Revis WR 5-9 175 SR Western Oregon Scappoose, Ore.
Shane Zylstra WR 6-4 215 SO Minnesota State Spicer, Minn.

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