Prior to the start of the current NCAA football season, Navarre graduate (C/O 2013) and Clemson tight end Jordan Leggett was named to the John Mackey Award watch list, an award given annually to the nation’s most outstanding tight end.
The committee was spot on.
Monday morning, Leggett was named a semifinalist (one of eight) for this year’s Mackey Award.
He’s hauled in 26 passes for 334 yards and a team-high six touchdowns for the Clemson Tigers — the No. 1 ranked team in the nation.
Leggett’s two TD grabs in a win over Georgia Tech tied a school record, and he was the fourth TE in Clemson history to crack 100 receiving yards when he posted 101 in the win over Florida State.
Leggett was an ACC Academic Honor Roll member last season and, according to Navarre athletic director Scott Murphy, Leggett has had a habit of going the extra mile when it comes to school since his days as a prep star at Navarre.
“During his senior year at Navarre, (Leggett) had an opportunity to enroll early at Clemson and go there in January,” said Murphy, in his 15th year as Navarre’s athletic director. “He took some online courses so he could finish up early and go join his future teammates (at Clemson). I remember him as a solid student and good young man. He played basketball for us too, for two years, then he decided to concentrate on football.”
In Leggett’s senior season at Navarre, he was ranked No. 7 tight end in the nation and No. 76 player in Florida by ESPN.
He helped lead the Raiders to a 12-2 season, which ended with a loss in the state semifinals.
“Whenever any of our athletes make it on TV, I try to check in on them,” Murphy said. “The more I watched Leggett the more I noticed how often the announcers spoke highly of him. Leggett is really catching a lot of attention from opposing teams this year.”
Joining Legget on the finalists list is Jake Butt (Michigan), Billy Freeman (San Jose State), Hunter Henry (Arkansas), Bucky Hodges (Virginia Tech), Austin Hooper (Stanford), O.J. Howard (Alabama) and Jake McGee (Florida).
The Mackey Award has been presented since 2000 (Tim Stratton, Purdue) and has been awarded to top collegiate tight ends like Dallas Clark (Colorado), Kellen Winslow (Miami), Heath Miller (Virginia), Marcedes Lewis (UCLA), Aaron Hernandez (Florida) and Florida State’s Nick O’Leary last season.