NEW ORLEANS – University of Oregon quarterback Marcus Mariota has been selected as one of 10 finalists for the Manning Award, given annually to the top collegiate quarterback in the country.
The winner of the award, sponsored by the Allstate Sugar Bowl and created to honor the college football accomplishments of Archie, Peyton and Eli Manning, is the only national quarterback award that takes into consideration the candidates’ bowl game performance before determining a winner.
Mariota is one of two finalists for award representing the Pac-12 Conference, along with USC’s Matt Barkley, and is one of only two freshmen quarterbacks in consideration for this year’s award, which was initiated in 2004. Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel is the other first-year quarterback vying for the honor.
The Honolulu, Hawaii standout previously was announced as the Pac-12’s Offensive Freshman of the Year and became the league’s first freshman to be named to the first-team all-conference contingent at quarterback since 1989. Mariota also became the school’s first freshman quarterback in 21 years to start the season opener while leading the Pac-12 in passing efficiency (5th nationally) and ranking second in the conference in touchdown passes (30). His completion percentage of 69.87% is currently ahead of the NCAA freshman record of 69.5 percent (Sam Bradford, Oklahoma, 2007). He has completed 218 of 312 passes for 2,511 yards to go along with only six interceptions.
He was named the association’s national player of the week after completing 20 of 23 passes for 304 yards and four touchdowns in a 62-51 win at USC one week prior to being successful on 27 of 34 throws for a career-high 377 yards and six TDs in a 59-17 victory at California.
The additional candidates include Tajh Boyd (Clemson), Collin Klein (Kansas State), Jordan Lynch (Northern Illinois), AJ McCarron (Alabama), Braxton Miller (Ohio State), Aaron Murray (Georgia), and Geno Smith (West Virginia).
The award winner is scheduled to be announced on Wednesday, Jan. 9.
-- GoDucks.com --