Monday, Aug. 8, 2011 | 4 p.m.
UNLV sophomore running back Tim Cornett was named to the Paul Hornung Award watch list on Monday, given annually to the most versatile player in college football.
Cornett was one of 50 named to the preseason list, and that itself is a major win for both the Galena Park, Texas, native and his fledgling program.
He made it pretty clear early on in last August's fall camp that he'd be an immediate impact guy for the Rebels, and one of coach Bobby Hauck's first UNLV commits did just that. While the Rebels struggled as a team, finishing just 2-11 in 2010, Cornett led the team with 546 rushing yards on 144 carries, scoring six touchdowns on the ground. He had a knack for the big play, using his quick feet and first-class speed to rip off several lengthy runs.
He added 13 catches for 98 yards and two more scores, while ranking second on the team with a 23.8-yard kickoff return average on 14 attempts.
The list will be trimmed to 3-5 finalists in early December, with the winner to be announced in early January.
UNLV opens its 2011 fall camp Tuesday morning at Rebel Park, and Cornett will enter it as the unquestioned leader within Hauck's stable of running backs. How much success he has this season, though, will largely depend on how quickly a young offensive line with as many as four potential freshman starters comes together.