LITTLE ROCK, Ark. -- Simpson linebacker Michael Connor is among the finalists for the sixth annual Cliff Harris Award, as announced by the Little Rock Touchdown Club and Wright Lindsey Jennings.
The senior is one of just 81 finalists for the award, which is presented to the nation's top small college defensive player representing more than 5,000 defensive players from almost 500 NCAA Division II, III and NAIA colleges and universities.
The hard-hitting linebacker from Woodward, Iowa had 113 tackles, 8.5 sacks and 16 tackles for loss in 2018. The American Rivers Conference Defensive MVP led the league in tackles and sacks, forcing three fumbles and intercepting one pass for the conference's No. 1 scoring defense.
Earlier this year Connor earned Second Team All-America honors from the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) and Second Team All-West Region honors from D3football.com.
Connor is one of 35 Division III players to make the final list and the only player from the American Rivers Conference.
An overall winner will be announced on December 24th and honored at the Little Rock Touchdown Club's annual awards banquet on January 10, 2019. The winner will receive the $3,000 Cliff Harris Award trophy presented by Cliff Harris. In addition to the overall winner, the top vote getters from each division will also be announced. A prestigious group of former college and pro football greats serve on the Cliff Harris Award Committee.