Watson named semifinalist for Davey O'Brien Award
FORT WORTH, Texas — After tabulating the results of the Davey O’Brien National Selection Committee’s ballots as well as the more than 2.5 million votes cast courtesy of the award’s fan vote, the semifinalists for the Davey O’Brien National Quarterback Award have been determined.
The Davey O’Brien National Quarterback Award is presented annually to the best college quarterback, and is the nation’s oldest and most prestigious national quarterback award.
The 2015 semifinalists, in alphabetical order, are: Trevone Boykin (TCU), Connor Cook (Michigan State), Brandon Doughty (Western Kentucky), Luke Falk (Washington State), Jared Goff (California), Kevin Hogan (Stanford), Matt Johnson (Bowling Green), Cody Kessler (USC), Paxton Lynch (Memphis), Patrick Mahomes (Texas Tech), Baker Mayfield (Oklahoma), Dak Prescott (Mississippi State), Keenan Reynolds (Navy), Josh Rosen (UCLA), Seth Russell (Baylor), Greg Ward Jr. (Houston) and Deshaun Watson (Clemson).
In all, 17 names appear on the semifinalist list, but 16 will be eligible to win the Davey O’Brien Award. Russell was voted into the semifinalist group, but will miss the remainder of the season because of injury. Foundation guidelines allow for an injured player to be honored as a semifinalist and the quarterback with the next highest vote total also included.
The collection of semifinalists is comprised of eight seniors, five juniors, three sophomores and one freshman. The 17 teams own a combined record of 112-24 (.824) this season.
Three players–Boykin, Cook and Prescott–are semifinalists for the second consecutive year. Boykin and Prescott both became finalists in 2014. In addition, 10 were named to the 2015 preseason watch list: Boykin, Cook, Doughty, Goff, Hogan, Kessler, Lynch, Prescott, Reynolds and Watson.
Schools from eight conference affiliations (American, ACC, Big Ten, Big 12, C-USA, MAC, Pac-12 and SEC) make up the list. Three leagues have multiple honorees, led by the Pac-12 with five. The Big 12 (four) and the American (three) are next.
Four schools represented—Baylor, Houston, Oklahoma, UCLA—are home to previous Davey O’Brien Award winners.
After clearing the first round totals, the fan vote at VoteOBrien.org will reopen Tuesday, Nov. 3 and remain open until noon (CT) on Sunday, Nov. 22, for the second round of balloting. Fans are invited to cast their vote for the nation’s best college quarterback as often as they wish.
The Fan Vote counts as five percent during each round of the voting process, and is combined with the results from the Davey O’Brien National Selection Committee, which is comprised of journalists, broadcasters, commentators and former winners.
In conjunction with ESPN, the Davey O’Brien Foundation and the Selection Committee will release the names of the three finalists on Tuesday, Nov. 24. The 2015 Davey O’Brien winner will be announced live on The Home Depot College Football Awards Thursday, Dec. 10.
Previous winners include: Jim McMahon (BYU, 1981), Todd Blackledge (Penn State, 1982), Steve Young (BYU, 1983), Doug Flutie (Boston College, 1984), Chuck Long (Iowa, 1985), Vinny Testaverde (Miami, 1986), Don McPherson (Syracuse, 1987), Troy Aikman (UCLA, 1988), Andre Ware (Houston, 1989), Ty Detmer (BYU, 1990-91), Gino Torretta (Miami, 1992), Charlie Ward (Florida State, 1993), Kerry Collins (Penn State, 1994), Danny Wuerffel (Florida, 1995-96), Peyton Manning (Tennessee, 1997), Michael Bishop (Kansas State, 1998), Joe Hamilton (Georgia Tech, 1999), Chris Weinke (Florida State, 2000), Eric Crouch (Nebraska, 2001), Brad Banks (Iowa, 2002), Jason White (Oklahoma, 2003-04), Vince Young (Texas, 2005), Troy Smith (Ohio State, 2006), Tim Tebow (Florida, 2007), Sam Bradford (Oklahoma, 2008), Colt McCoy (Texas, 2009), Cam Newton (Auburn, 2010), Robert Griffin III (Baylor, 2011), Johnny Manziel (Texas A&M, 2012), Jameis Winston (Florida State, 2013) and Marcus Mariota (Oregon, 2014).
The 39th Annual Davey O’Brien Awards Dinner will be held Monday, Feb. 15, 2016, in Fort Worth, Texas.