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Michigan State Football: Jayden Reed makes Biletnikoff Award watch list

Syndication: Lansing State Journal Nick King/Lansing State Journal / USA TODAY NETWORK

The 2022 preseason award watch lists for college football continue to drop this week, with several Michigan State Spartans being recognized. Most recently, MSU redshirt senior wide receiver Jayden Reed was named to the Biletnikoff Award watch list on Thursday.

The Biletnikoff Award — named after Pro Football Hall of Fame wide receiver Fred Biletnikoff, who played for Florida State during his college days and the Oakland Raiders during his NFL career in the 1960s and 1970s — is awarded annually to the “season’s outstanding college football receiver regardless of position.”

The award is presented by the Tallahassee Quarterback Club Foundation, and has been given out since 1994. Michigan State has had one prior winner, the late Charles Rogers, who took home the trophy in 2002.

Reed led the Spartans in many statistical categories in 2021, including receptions (59) receiving yards (1,026) and touchdown catches (10). His 17.4 yards per catch average ranked second on the team, behind only Jalen Nailor (18.8). Reed ranked in the top-five in the Big Ten Conference in receiving yards, touchdown receptions, yards per catch average and yards per game average (78.9).

Reed was also a dynamic punt returner. He ranked first in the Big Ten for punt return average (19.8 yards per return), and was one of only four players in the FBS to score two punt returns for touchdowns. For his efforts in 2021, Reed earned first-team All-American honors as an all-purpose player by the American Football Coaches Association, and received third-team All-Big Ten honors.

Earlier this week, Reed was named to the watch list for the Maxwell Award — presented annually to the “most outstanding player in college football.” Reed was joined by his teammate, redshirt junior quarterback Payton Thorne, on the Maxwell Award watch list.

The Biletnikoff Award winner for the 2022 season will be announced on Dec. 8. The Biletnikoff Award Celebration and Presentation, which honors the 2022 Biletnikoff Award winner, will take place in Tallahassee, Florida on March 4, 2023.

The full list of names added to the 2022 preseason Biletnikoff Award watch list can be viewed here.