By Rob Moseley
His bid for the Davey O’Brien Award having been derailed by injury last year, Marcus Mariota will get another crack at being named college football’s top quarterback in 2014.
Mariota, an Oregon junior, was named Wednesday to the preseason watch list for the O’Brien Award. The Hawaii native was a semifinalist last year, before a knee injury slowed him in November.
The Davey O’Brien National Quarterback Award is handed out by a selection committee asked to consider academics, character, leadership and sportsmanship along with quarterback play. Semifinalists will be announced in early November, and three finalists will be determined later that month.
Mariota is one of six returning semifinalists along with 2013 winner Jameis Winston of Florida State, Brett Hundley of UCLA, Sean Mannion of Oregon State, Braxton Miller of Ohio State and Bryce Petty of Baylor.
Last week, Mariota was named to the preseason watch list for the Maxwell Award as national player of the year. He figures to be similarly recognized Friday when the Walter Camp Award watch list is announced.
Mariota completed 245-of-286 passes for 3,665 yards and 31 touchdowns with four interceptions. He ran for 715 yards despite being limited by the knee injury throughout November, giving him a school-record 4,380 yards of total offense for the season.
Oregon opens fall camp on Aug. 4, and begins the 2014 regular season Aug. 30 at home against South Dakota on Pac-12 Networks at 7:30 p.m.