The countdown to the 2018 college football season is on. Four FCS teams are in action Aug. 25 as Duquesne takes on UMass, Prairie View faces Rice and North Carolina A&T and Jacksonville State square off in ESPN’s FCS Kickoff.
HERO Sports is going to count down each day by highlighting the best player in FCS football who wears the jersey number of the number of days to kickoff. You can find the running list of top players here.
*Note: Jersey numbers are from the 2017 season.
30: Justin Fitzpatrick, senior defensive back- Western Illinois
If Justin Fitzpatrick isn't one of the best outright athletes on our countdown list, he's at least one of the busiest. The two-sport college athlete plays a little bit of center field in both the fall and the spring, albeit for two different teams at WIU.
Fitzpatrick, who only wears No. 30 on the football field, plays safety for the leathernecks in the fall and patrols the outfield in the spring. In 2017, he finished with 57 tackles and a conference-best five interceptions. He was a Second-Team defensive back in the MVFC last year, helping Western to a top-40 scoring defense.
Fitzpatrick stuffed the stat sheet with 4.5 TFL's, two forced fumbles, six PBU's and two hurries last year. When you factor in the baseball, he really is a do-it-all safety.
FCS Kickoff Countdown: The Best Player in FCS Who Wears Each Number, 1-99
CFB Countdown: The Best Player in FBS Football, 1-99