Campbell quarterback Daniel Smith has been named to the 25-man preseason watch list for the STATS FCS Walter Payton Award.
The Payton Award is given annually to the FCS national offensive player of the year. Presented since 1987, the Payton Award has watched past winners such as Steve McNair, Tony Romo, Brian Westbrook, John Friesz, Brian Finneran, Jimmy Garoppolo and Cooper Kupp move on to the NFL.
Smith was also named to the STATS Walter Payton Award watch list last season, and became a finalist for the STATS Jerry Rice Award for FCS freshman player of the year, finishing fourth in the final voting.
The Leesburg, Va., native was named First Team Freshman All-America by Phil Steele, who also named Smith the PFL’s Freshman of the Year and Second Team All-PFL in the publication’s FCS all-conference teams announcement. Smith was also named 2017 PFL Offensive Freshman of the Year and Second Team All-PFL by the conference’s coaches.
He was also named to the College Football Performance Awards’ (CFPA) 2017 midseason watch list for the FCS National Performer of the Year Trophy.
Smith finished the 2017 regular season with the fourth-most rushing yards in the country, with his 1,272 yards on the ground leading all FCS freshmen and quarterbacks. Smith also led the nation in rush yards per carry (9.13), while standing second in rushing yards per game, sixth in points responsible for per game, ninth in total offense, 15th in points responsible for, 13th in rushing touchdowns, 16th in all-purpose yards, 24th in total touchdowns, 19th in passing yards per completion and 23rd in scoring.
Smith set Campbell single-season records for rushing yards, total offense (3,161), all-purpose yards (1,272) and touchdowns responsible for (30). After just one season, Smith is already Campbell’s career leader in touchdown passes with 18. He rushed for 12 touchdowns on the season, adding 1,889 yards passing.
At Davidson, Smith exploded for 289 yards rushing, the third most overall and the most by a quarterback in a single game in the FCS in 2017. He added four rushing touchdowns, adding another passing in Campbell’s 42-29 win.
During the season, Smith rushed for over 100 yards six times in just 10 games.
Campbell kicks off its 2018 schedule on Aug. 30, hosting Chowan at Barker-Lane Stadium. The Camels open Big South play Oct. 20 at Monmouth.