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Gators, Hurricanes, Seminoles kickers named semifinalists for Lou Groza Award

Miami's Andres Borregales, FSU's Ryan Fitzgerald, Florida's Trey Smack among 20 semifinalists for award given to nation's top kicker
Ryan Fitzgerald, Andres Borregales and Trey Smack, 2023 Lou Groza Award semifinalists
Posted at 11:38 AM, Nov 09, 2023
and last updated 2023-11-09 20:57:37-05

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — This year's Lou Groza Collegiate Place-Kicker Award has a distinctly Florida feel to it.

Miami's Andres Borregales, Florida State's Ryan Fitzgerald and Florida's Trey Smack are among the 20 semifinalists for the award presented to the top kicker in college football, the Palm Beach County Sports Commission announced Thursday.

Borregales is one of six kickers who have been semifinalists before.

Miami Hurricanes kicker Andres Borregales kicks field goal during second half vs. Clemson Tigers, Oct. 21, 2023
Miami kicker Andres Borregales kicks a field goal during the second half against Clemson, Saturday, Oct. 21, 2023, in Miami Gardens, Fla.

A semifinalist in 2022, Borregales is 17-for-19 on field goal attempts this season. His lone misses were from 54 and 45 yards out. He's also made 29 of 30 extra-point attempts. Borregales' older brother, Jose, won the Lou Groza Award while kicking for the Hurricanes in 2020.

Fitzgerald has connected on 11 of 12 field goal attempts this season and all 45 extra points. He leads the No. 4 Seminoles in scoring with 78 points.

Florida State Seminoles kicker Ryan Fitzgerald kicks PAT to make score 15-0 vs. Virginia Tech Hokies, Oct. 7, 2023
Florida State kicker Ryan Fitzgerald kicks a point-after-try to make the score 15-0 against Virginia Tech during the first quarter Saturday, Oct. 7, 2023, in Tallahassee, Fla.

Florida State has more Lou Groza Award winners than any other school since it was established in 1992. Sebastian Janikowski – the only two-time winner – took home the trophy in 1998 and 1999, while Graham Gano won the award in 2008 and Roberto Aguayo won it in 2013.

Smack has converted on 14 of 16 field goal tries and is a perfect 19-for-19 on extra points. He took over place-kicking duties during the Gators' 29-16 upset of then-No. 11 Tennessee on Sept. 16.

Florida Gators kicker Trey Smack runs onto field at Utah Utes, Aug. 31, 2023
Florida Gators kicker Trey Smack runs onto the field during a game at Utah, Thursday, Aug. 31, 2023, in Salt Lake City, Utah.

Borregales and Fitzgerald will face off this Saturday when the undefeated Seminoles host the Hurricanes in Tallahassee. In a rivalry in which kicking has played such a pivotal role, their performances may help to narrow the field come Nov. 28, when the three finalists will be announced.

The winner will be announced Dec. 8.

Aguayo will be the keynote speaker at next month's award banquet at the West Palm Beach Marriott. ESPN 106.3 FM's Theo Dorsey will serve as emcee.