Thomas, Smart earn semifinalist status with Outland, Munger awards
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Thomas, Smart earn semifinalist status with Outland, Munger awards

Kirby Smart
Photo: Chamberlain Smith/UGA

ATHENS, Ga. – Georgia junior left tackle Andrew Thomas has been named a semifinalist for the Outland Trophy while Bulldog head coach has been included on the list of semifinalists for the George Munger Award.

Thomas, a native of Lithonia, Ga., is one of six semifinalists for the Outland Trophy, which is given to the nation’s most outstanding interior lineman. Former defensive lineman Bill Stanfill has been the Bulldogs’ only winner of the Outland Trophy in 1968. Three finalists will be named on Nov. 25 and the recipient will be picked during ESPN’s The Home Depot College Football Awards on Dec. 12.

Smart was awarded the 2017 Munger Award for being the nation’s top coach and was also a semifinalist in 2018. The 1998 UGA graduate is in his fourth year leading Georgia’s program. Voters will determine the finalists on Dec. 9 and the announcement of the winner will be on Dec. 29.

Thomas is tied for the lead in career starts on offense with the quarterback (Jake Fromm) that he protects with 38, including all 10 this year and the last 21 in a row. The 6-5, 320-pound Thomas was a 2019 Sporting News/CBS Sports/Athlon/ESPN.com/AP Midseason All-American, has been named the Southeastern Conference Offensive Lineman of the Week twice this year and was the Outland Trophy Player of the Month in October.

Thomas has anchored a line that has allowed only six sacks, which leads the SEC and ranks second nationally. The Bulldogs’ Rushing Offense is averaging 208.6 yards per game, which is ranked fourth in the SEC and in the top 25 nationally, and has been a catalyst for the Bulldogs’ 3-0 run versus teams in the top 25 this season. The 2017 Freshman All-American turned himself into a 2018 First Team All-American and was on last year’s SEC All-SEC First Team.

Smart has directed the Bulldogs to three straight SEC Eastern Division titles and a No. 4 current College Football Playoff (CFP) ranking. Georgia leads the conference and is ranked in the top six nationally in Scoring Defense, Rushing Defense and Total Defense during its 9-1 start. Fromm is directing an offense that is averaging 32.4 points per game and has a running back in junior D’Andre Swift who has eclipsed the 1,000-yard rushing mark for the second consecutive year.

The No. 4 Bulldogs (9-1, 6-1 SEC) play host to No. 24 Texas A&M (7-3, 4-2) on Saturday. CBS will televise the matchup at 3:30 p.m.

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