Carter named to watchlist for Wuerffel Trophy

The All Sports Association of Fort Walton Beach named redshirt senior defensive lineman Zachary Carter to the Wuerffel Trophy Watch List on Thursday.

The Wuerffel Trophy was first handed out in 2005 and honors college football players who serve others, celebrate their impact and inspire greater service in the world. It is awarded to the FBS player who best combines exemplary community service with leadership achievement on and off the field.

The trophy is named after Gator Great Danny Wuerffel, who won the Heisman Trophy and led the Gators to their first national championship in 1996. Since retiring from football, Wuerffel has made it his life mission to participate in various humanitarian endeavors.

The winner of the 2021 Wuerffel Trophy will be announced on Dec. 9, while the formal presentation will occur in February in Fort Walton Beach.

Carter, a Tampa native, is one of the most vocal leaders on defense. He played in all 12 games last season and started 11. He led the Gators with five sacks and 9.5 tackles-for-loss and returned a fumble for a touchdown against Arkansas.

He was named the SEC Defensive Lineman of the Week after collecting season-highs of eight tackles and 1.5 sacks against South Carolina. Despite missing the first half of the Georgia game, he registered a career-high five quarterback hurries against the Bulldogs.

He tied for second on the team in 2019 with 4.5 sacks and seven tackles-for-loss despite only starting two games.

At 6-foot-4 and 285 pounds, Carter is an athletic freak. His combination of elite strength and athleticism allows him to rush the passer and stuff the run from either the strongside end spot or at tackle, though he figures to receive more snaps at end this season.

Ethan was born in Gainesville and has lived in the Starke, Florida, area his entire life. He played basketball for five years and knew he wanted to be a sportswriter when he was in middle school. He’s attended countless Gators athletic events since his early childhood, with baseball being his favorite sport to attend. He’s a proud 2019 graduate of the University of Florida and a 2017 graduate of Santa Fe College. He interned with the University Athletic Association’s communications department for 1 ½ years as a student and has spent the last two football seasons writing for InsideTheGators.com. He is a long-suffering fan of the Jacksonville Jaguars and the Tampa Bay Rays. You can follow him on Twitter @ehughes97.