MARTIN, Tenn. – Jeremy Butler, who earned All-American status as a wide receiver on the University of Tennessee at Martin football team this past fall, helped lead the American squad to a 20-3 victory over the National team in the first-ever Medal of Honor Bowl, played last Saturday at Johnson Hagood Stadium in Charleston, SC.
A premier all-star game featuring some of the nation’s top draft eligible college football players, the Medal of Honor Bowl featured players from Football Bowl Subdivision conference such as the SEC, Big 12, ACC, American Athletic and Pac-12. Butler was the lone representative from the Ohio Valley Conference and was one of 15 wide receivers invited to participate.
A Bradenton, Fla. native, Butler hauled in two catches for a game-high 77 yards, including a 61-yard grab that was the longest reception in the game.
Butler was mere inches away from creating the first score of the contest. On National’s first drive of the game, Butler snared a 16-yard catch on third-and-12 before he was tackled at the one-yard line. On the next play, quarterback Danny O’Brien scored a rushing touchdown to give the National team a lead it would not relinquish.
Butler also drew some raves from all in attendance for a spectacular grab as the game reached the end. With a little under three minutes left in the game and National pinned back on its own five-yard line, Butler was on the receiving end of a 61-yard strike from O’Brien on third-and-seven. The long gain essentially helped the National team run out the clock to give head coach Ralph Friedgen the victory.
The 6-2, 208-pound Butler earned All-American second team accolades from the Sports Network, Associated Press and College Sports Madness after ranking in the top-10 in the Football Championship Subdivision ranks in receiving yards (1,203, sixth) and receptions (90, seventh). Both of those totals rank as the best single-season performances in UT Martin history.
During Butler’s two seasons (2012-13) at UT Martin, he accumulated eight 100-yard receiving games – an all-time program record. He ranks second in the UT Martin record book in touchdown receptions (20), third in receptions (141) and fifth in receiving yards (1,953). He became the second player in UT Martin football history to post back-to-back seasons with double-digit touchdown receptions (10 in each season).