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July 18, 2011

Johnson on four watch lists

The Walter Camp Award's 2011 preseason watch list is out, and it includes University of Tulsa wide receiver and kick return specialist Damaris Johnson, the NCAA's all-time leader in all-purpose yardage.

The list of 40 also includes Oklahoma quarterback Landry Jones and receiver Ryan Broyles, as well as quarterback Brandon Weeden and receiver Justin Blackmon of Oklahoma State.

The Camp Award is given every year to the nation's most outstanding college football player. It's the nation's fourth-oldest individual college football award.

"You can say anything you want to about Damaris," Tulsa head coach Bill Blankenship said this spring. "Most exciting player in college football, period, and then whatever else you want to say."

Johnson is also a part of three other watch lists. He is on the watch list for the 75th annual Maxwell Award, which is given to America's most outstanding football player, as well as the 2011 Fred Biletnikoff Award, given to the nation's top receiver.

A new award, The Pony Express Award, also includes Johnson, paired with teammate G.J. Kinne, and honors the player tandem whose work ethic, desire, leadership and playmaking ability best fuel their team.

Johnson was named to the Associated Press second team as an all-purpose performer after last season. A kick returner, punt returner and receiver, Johnson led the nation in each of the past two seasons for all-purpose yards when he averaged 224 yards in the 2009 season and 202 yards last year. The senior already ranks as the NCAA's career record-holder for all-purpose yards with 7,796 yards and the NCAA's all-time leader for kickoff return yards with 3,417 yards.

The 5-foot-8 Johnson had six 200+ all-purpose yard games and 46 plays for over 20+ yards in the 2010 campaign. He led the Hurricane in receiving with 872 yards on 57 receptions, kick return yardage with 34 returns for 904 yards, punt returns with 292 yards on 23 returns and was second in rushing with 560 yards and a 10.2 average. Johnson also totaled 13 touchdowns, including seven rushing, four via the pass and one each on a kick and punt return.

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