EAST LANSING, Mich. -- Running back LJ Scott has been named to the 2017 Maxwell Award Watch List, the Maxwell Football Club announced Monday. The Maxwell Award, named in honor of Robert W. “Tiny” Maxwell, has been given to America’s College Player of the Year since 1937.
The 85-player watch list includes 11 players from the Big Ten.
Last season, Scott led the Spartans in nearly every rushing category, compiling career highs in rushing yards (994), carries (184) and rushing touchdowns (6), on the way to being named a third-team All-Big Ten selection by the media and honorable mention choice by the coaches. Scott’s 82.8 rushing yards per game average ranked eighth in the Big Ten during the regular season and his 86.9 ypg in conference play was sixth best. With 994 rushing yards, Scott posted the seventh most by a Spartan sophomore in a single season. He also had a team-best 10 runs of 20 yards or longer.
With five 100-yard games, Scott tied for third most in the Big Ten in the regular season, including four of the last six games (109.7 ypg last six games) of the 2016 season. He collected career highs in rushing yards (160), all-purpose yards (236) and receiving yards (76) vs. No. 2 Ohio State on Nov. 19, scoring on the second play from scrimmage against the Buckeyes on a career-long 64-yard TD reception and also recorded a career-long rush with a 61-yard scamper in the first quarter. Scott finished with 19 carries for 160 yards (8.4 avg.) and two catches for 76 yards vs. OSU. He also rushed for 139 yards against No. 2 Michigan on Oct. 29, the most by a player against the Wolverines during the regular season.
Scott also compiled 100-yard games against Furman (105), Maryland (128) and Rutgers (122). He also had 98 yards with a touchdown on 22 carries in the 36-28 win at No. 18 Notre Dame on Sept. 17.
Entering his junior season, Scott has rushed for 1,693 yards (65.1 ypg; 5.1 avg.) and 17 touchdowns in 26 career games, including 11 starts. The 1,693 career rushing yards are fifth most by a Spartan through their sophomore season.
Semifinalists for the Maxwell Award will be announced October 30, 2017, while the three finalists for the award will be unveiled November 20, 2017. The winner of the 2017 Maxwell Award will be announced as part of the Home Depot College Football Awards Show held on December 7, 2017. The formal presentations of the award will be made at the Maxwell Football Club Awards Gala hosted by Tropicana Hotel & Casino Atlantic City on March 9, 2018.