Former Seahawks star Ford a finalist for college football award

Former Hilton Head Island High School star and current Texas Longhorns standout Poona Ford is among 12 finalists for the S.C. Football Hall of Fame’s Blanchard-Rogers Trophy.

The trophy is awarded annually to the most outstanding collegiate player of the year with South Carolina ties. Previous winners include Deshaun Watson in 2015 and 2016), Vic Beasley in 2014, and Tajh Boyd in 2013.

Though 10 games this season, Ford had collected 26 tackles, six tackles for loss, a forced fumble, and a blocked kick. He is projected to be one of the top five defensive tackles selected in the 2018 NFL Draft.

Other finalists for the state award are Jake Bentley and Skai Moore from the University of South Carolina; P.J. Blazejowski and Antonio Wilcox of Furman; Austin Bryant, Dorian O’Daniel and Kelly Bryant of Clemson; Anthony Ellis of Charleston Southern; Darius Leonard of S.C. State; Mason Rudolph, a Rock Hill graduate who now plays at Oklahoma State; and Andre Stoddard of Wofford.

The S.C. Football Hall of Fame allows its supporting members — anyone who purchases a membership, sports media and its boards and executive team — to vote for this award. Online voting at will close Dec. 11.

The Blanchard-Rogers Trophy is awarded at the organization’s annual Enshrinement Banquet, to be held on April 19 in Greenville.