Georgia’s Blankenship wins award as nation’s top placekicker

Credit: John Bazemore

Credit: John Bazemore

Georgia’s Rodrigo Blankenship won the “Lou Groza Award” as college football’s best placekicker Thursday night.

Blankenship claimed the prize over two other finalists at the College Football Awards show in Atlanta, capping a remarkable college career for the former walk-on.

“I came and had a dream of being able to play in the SEC and play for  the University of Georgia and do whatever it takes to help the University of Georgia win football games,” Blankenship said after collecting the trophy. “I have been so blessed with so many amazing opportunities that allowed me to reach this point.”

Blankenship has one game left in his UGA career: the Sugar Bowl against Baylor.

“It’s definitely been the best five years of my life at the University of Georgia,” Blankenship said. “It has been an incredible journey. I have so many people to thank.”

The other finalists for the Groza Award were Iowa’s Keith Duncan and Washington State’s Blake Mazza.

Blankenship, from Marietta, has made 25 of 31 field-goal attempts this season. He has made all 198 of his career PAT attempts, including 44 this season. He is Georgia’s all-time scoring leader with 432 points, second most in SEC history.

The College Football Awards event was held at the College Football Hall of Fame in downtown Atlanta and televised live on ESPN.