The John Mackey Award Selection Committee released its 2013 Preseason Watch List today, which includes Virginia junior Jake McGee as one of 37 to watch this upcoming season. Last year, McGee had 28 catches and five touchdowns, which, as Tiki pointed out last month, is a commendable effort considering there were others in line for the starting position.
McGee joins Eric Ebron of North Carolina, Nick O'Leary of Florida State, Clive Walford of Miami and Asa Watson of N.C. State as the ACC's representatives on the list. Future member Louisville also has Gerald Christian, while pseudo-member/non-member Notre Dame has two on the list, Ben Koyack and Troy Niklas.
As a testament to the upward battle UVA fans have to look forward to this season, three of Virginia's four out-of-conference opponents also made their way to the list: Ball State's Zane Fakes, BYU's Kaneakua Friel, and Oregon's Colt Lyerla. You can see why some have ranked Virginia's OOC schedule as among the top ten toughest in the country.
Here is the full 2013 John Mackey Award Watch List. The Midseason Watch List will be released October 14. Former Cavalier Heath Miller was the 2004 recipient of the award.