Hunter Henry has officially been recognized as the best tight end in college football. It's well-deserved and awesome.
Henry joins D.J. Williams as Arkansas' Mackey Award winners. Williams won the award following the 2010 season. According to UA, Arkansas is the only school with multiple winners. They're probably already designing the TEU recruiting materials right now.
UA also did a fantastic job breaking down Henry's season and showcasing why he deserved the award. We'll share parts of it here:
An All-SEC first team selection and USA TODAY All-America first team choice, Henry paced Mackey Award finalists in the following categories: Receptions, receiving yards, yards per catch, yards per game, first down receptions, 100-yard games, 10-plus yard receptions, 15-plus yard receptions and 20-plus yard receptions.
The Razorbacks’ second leading receiver’s dominating performance (seven catches, career-high 129 yards and two touchdowns) against Mississippi State on Nov. 21 helped him surpass his 2013 and 2014 season totals for receptions and receiving yards. For the season, Henry has totaled 46 receptions for an FBS-leading 647 yards among tight ends and three touchdowns.
The focal point of Arkansas’ 4th and 25 conversion in overtime at No. 19 Ole Miss, Henry is one of senior quarterback Brandon Allen’s most reliable targets and go-to playmakers. He has a reception in 22 straight games, which is the longest active streak among SEC tight ends and fourth longest among FBS tight ends. In the last two-plus seasons, he has been targeted 182 times, reeling in 111 passes for 1,569 yards, good for 61 percent and 8.6 yards per target.
Through 12 games this season, Henry is hauling in 68 percent of his targets, averaging 9.5 yards per target, which leads all SEC tight ends and placing him fifth among FBS tight ends (first among Power 5 and Mackey Award finalists; minimum 25 receptions).
Henry has not dropped a pass through 12 games this season and has showcased his strong hands throughout his career, dropping just six of his 182 (3.3 percent) looks.
This season, Henry’s receptions have resulted in a first down or a touchdown 76 percent of the time. For his career, 89 of his 111 receptions have resulted into a first down or touchdown, for a conversion rate of 80 percent.
Henry has been especially dominant on third down. Of his 1,541 career receiving yards, 579 (37 catches) have come on third down – more than any other down. His receptions on third-down passing plays result in a first down or touchdown 97.3 percent of the time (34 first downs, 2 touchdowns).
Among all FBS tight ends, Henry ranks first in the following third down categories: Receiving yards (250), first downs (14) and 15-plus yard catches (8). He also leads all SEC receivers in third down receptions, which ranks fourth among FBS tight ends.
An every-down tight end, Henry has been on the field 95 percent of Arkansas’ offensive plays on the season, including 443 of 470 run plays and 335 of 348 pass attempts. As a blocker, Henry hasn’t allowed a sack or even a quarterback hurry this season. His ability in the run game has helped Arkansas rush for more than 200 yards in an SEC-best six league games this season.
Congratulations! It's a great honor.