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Pitt football players J.P. Holtz and Alex Officer named to award preseason watch lists

Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Really late on this, but a couple of more Panthers were named to preseason award watch lists for the 2015 college football season.

J.P. Holtz was named to the watch list for the John Mackey Award, given to the nation's top tight end. Offensive lineman Alex Officer was also named to the watch list for the Rimington Trophy, given to college football's top center.

Nice to see them gain recognition, but both are probably long shots for the award. Despite being a talented tight end, Holtz, in particular, has several things working against him.

First, he's on a stacked offense that includes running back James Conner and wide receiver Tyler Boyd - legit first-team All-American candidates. Those two will make up a large chunk of the offense and it's unclear how much will be left for other players, barring injury. Holtz also has never accounted for big time numbers at Pitt - something he'll need for consideration for this award. In three seasons, he has a total of 57 catches for 581 yards and seven touchdowns. To put into context, last year's winner, Nick O'Leary, had 48 catches for 618 yards and six touchdowns in 2014 alone. Finally, Holtz will likely again split time with Scott Orndoff, who has also been an end zone target in his two years at Pitt with three scores.

Officer could also share time as well with former starting center Artie Rowell back on the field returning from injury.

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