A national voting body of Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) coaches, sports information directors, national media and former Ray Guy Award winners will decide the three award finalists, who will be named on November 23. Voters will then cast a second round of ballots to decide the winner.
The winner of the 10th Ray Guy Award will be announced live on ESPN during the Home Depot ESPNU College Football Awards show on Thursday, December 10. The winner will again be honored at the All Area Football Banquet presented by the Augusta Sports Council and The Augusta Chronicle in late-January 2010.
The Greater Augusta Sports Council created the Ray Guy Award in 2000 to honor Thomson, Georgia-native and College Football Hall of Fame inductee Ray Guy. The winner must display team leadership, self-discipline and have a positive impact on the team’s success.
Butler, a 6-2, 203-pound native of Duluth, Ga., is leading the nation with an average of 49.3 yards on 40 punts in his first year as the Bulldogs’ starter. This average gives him more than a five-yard edge over his competition on the Southeastern Conference list and more than a three-yard edge on the NCAA list.
He is on pace to shatter the school record of 45.4 yards set by Chip Andrews in 1984 and compete for the SEC’s all-time single season mark of 48.2 (minimum 50 punts). Georgia leads the nation in net punting with an average of 43.95 yards.
After starting the 2009 season with the second-best punting average for a game (57.0) in school history at #9 Oklahoma State, Butler had launched 21 punts measuring 50 or more yards, including his career-long 75 yarder against the Cowboys.
Butler has also performed in an outstanding manner in the classroom. He was recently named to the ESPN The Magazine All-District Academic Team after posting a 3.52 grade point average (GPA) in Telecommunications Arts.
One of only two punters from the SEC to be named a semifinalist, Butler has already been named a Sporting News and Phil Steele Midseason All-American (first team).