JONESBORO, Ark. (7/18/19) – Arkansas State senior wide receiver Kirk Merritt has been named to the 2019 Biletnikoff Award Watch List, announced Thursday by the Tallahassee Quarterback Club (TQC) Foundation.
Merritt is one of 50 players from across the nation to find a place on this year’s watch list for the award, which is issued annually to the nation’s outstanding FBS receiver regardless of position. He is one of 17 players from a Group of 5 conference and the only player from the Sun Belt to receive the recognition.
The Destrehan, La., native becomes the third all-time A-State player named to the Biletnikoff Award Watch List, joining former wideouts J.D. McKissic in 2013 and Dwayne Frampton in 2011. The three players hold the top three single-season school records for both receptions and receiving yards.
Merritt has also been tabbed as a 2019 Preseason First Team All-Sun Belt Conference selection and to the watch list for the Maxwell Award, which recognizes America’s college player of the year. He is one of just 11 players in the nation to be named to both the Maxwell and Biletnikoff Award watch lists.
A First Team All-Sun Belt selection and the league’s Newcomer of the Year in 2018, Merritt is coming off one of the best seasons ever assembled by an A-State wide receiver. He recorded 83 receptions for 1,005 yards, which were both the third most in school history. He averaged 6.4 receptions per game to rank 20th in the nation, while his total receiving yards ranked 35th.
Merritt completed the year with five receiving touchdowns while also hitting the 100-yard mark in three outings, including a season-high 180 yards against Coastal Carolina that were the ninth most in A-State history for a single game.
The Biletnikoff Award is a member of the National College Football Awards Association (NCFAA), which encompasses the most prestigious awards in college football. Founded in 1997, the NCFAA and its 25 awards now boast over 800 recipients, dating to 1935.
Arkansas State is set to open its 2019 season Aug. 31 with a 6:00 p.m. kickoff at Centennial Bank Stadium against SMU. Season tickets are available for purchase through the A-State Ticket Office, located at First National Bank Arena’s lower red entrance, in person, by phone at 870-972-2781 or online by visiting AStateRedWolves.com.