LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — The KCAC football season has been over for a while, but McPherson College’s Travis Steenson is still being honored.
Steenson, a McPherson High graduate, is among the finalists for the Cliff Harris Award, presented annually to the top defensive player in small college football at the NCAA Division II, III and NAIA levels. A total of 81 finalists from all three levels have been selected.
The winner will be announced on Saturday and later honored at the Little Rock Touchdown Club's annual awards banquet on Jan. 19. In addition to the overall winner, the top vote-getters from each division will be announced. The award is named after six-time NFL Pro Bowl selectee Cliff Harris, who was a hard-hitting safety for the Dallas Cowboys.
Steenson ranked third in the NAIA in tackles with 14.5 per game. He had 159 total tackles, including 75 solo stops, 11.5 tackles for loss, 2.0 sacks, two pass break-ups, an interception and a fumble recovery.
He accumulated a season-high 24 tackles against Friends to earn KCAC Defensive Player of the Week honors despite the Bulldogs losing the game, and had 17 stops, 3.5 tackles for loss and a pair of sacks against Bethel. He was named first-team KCAC.
Steenson is one of three KCAC players nominated for the award, joining linebacker KyRandall Smith of Saint Mary and defensive lineman Evan Sprayberry of league champion Tabor. Smith was the KCAC’s Defensive Player of the Year.