Big Ten Quarterbacks Complete Allstate Sugar Bowl's Manning Award Watch List park
Three Big Ten quarterbacks have been selected to the annual Watch List for the Manning Award, sponsored by the Allstate Sugar Bowl, which recognizes the nation's top collegiate quarterback each year. The Watch List was announced by conference in conjunction with each league's media days with the Big Ten being the final batch of signal-callers named to the list due to its media days kicking off on Thursday. Taylor Martinez (Nebraska), Denard Robinson (Michigan) and James Vandenberg (Iowa) are the final additions to the 2012 list.
The overall Watch List includes 25 of the top quarterbacks in the nation heading into the 2012 season. The winner will be announced after the bowls in January and will be honored at a ceremony in New Orleans.
The Manning Award was created by the Allstate Sugar Bowl in honor of the college football accomplishments of Archie, Peyton and Eli Manning. It is the only quarterback award that includes the candidates' bowl performances in its balloting.
Martinez is a top dual-threat quarterback who passed for 2,089 yard and 13 touchdowns while rushing for another 874 yards and nine scores. He closed the year strong with just one interception in his last 132 attempts. After setting the school marks for total offense as a freshman and a sophomore, the junior already ranks third all-time in that category for the Cornhuskers with 5,559 total yards. Nebraska opens the 2012 season on Sept. 1, hosting Southern Miss.
Another tremendous dual-threat quarterback who makes the Watch List for the third time is Michigan star Denard Robinson. As a junior, he threw for 2,173 yards and 20 touchdowns to go with 1,176 rushing yards and 16 scores on the ground to lead the Wolverines to the Allstate Sugar Bowl. He now has six of the Big Ten's top 10 all-time rushing games by a quarterback. Robinson and the Wolverines will have a very challenging start to the 2012 season as they travel to Texas to battle defending national champions Alabama at Cowboys Stadium on Sept. 1.
The final Watch List addition is Iowa senior James Vandenberg, who had more yards (3,022), touchdowns (25) and completions (237) last year than any other returning Big Ten quarterback. He became just the fourth Iowa quarterback to top 3,000 yards and narrowly missed the school record for touchdown strikes. His 399 yards against Pittsburgh were the seventh-most in school history. Iowa opens the 2012 season on Sept. 1 at Soldier Field in Chicago, taking on defending Mid-American Conference champ Northern Illinois.
The preseason Watch List recognizes top quarterbacks in the nation based on previous collegiate performance, however, every quarterback in the nation remains eligible for the honor. Additional quarterbacks may be added to the Watch List after the start of the season. The list of 10 finalists will be released on Monday, Nov. 26. The winner will be announced on Wednesday, Jan. 9.
The Manning Award will be recognizing its ninth winner this year. USC's Matt Leinart was the inaugural winner of the award in 2005, followed by Texas' Vince Young in 2006. Both went on to be top 10 NFL draft picks. In 2007, LSU's JaMarcus Russell earned the award and was the NFL's No. 1 draft pick. Boston College's Matt Ryan claimed the award in 2008 and was drafted No. 3, quickly becoming the starting quarterback for the Atlanta Falcons. In 2009, Florida star Tim Tebow earned the honor – he also went on to be selected in the first round of the NFL Draft. The 2010 winner was Texas signal-caller Colt McCoy, the winningest quarterback in college football history, who was selected by the Cleveland Browns in the draft. Auburn's Cameron Newton earned the award in 2011, prior to being selected No. 1 overall in the 2011 NFL Draft by the Carolina Panthers. This past season's honoree was Robert Griffin, III, from Baylor, who was also a top NFL draft pick (No. 2 overall by the Washington Redskins).
2012 Manning Award Watch List
| Name, School
|Ryan Aplin, Arkansas State||304-476||.639||3,588||19||16||133.6||588 yds, 10 TDs|
|Matt Barkley, USC||308-446||.691||3,528||39||7||161.2||—|
|Tajh Boyd, Clemson||298-499||.597||3,828||33||12||141.2||218 yds, 5 TDs|
|Tyler Bray, Tennessee||147-247||.595||1,983||17||6||144.8||—|
|Alex Carder, Western Michigan||330-502||.657||3,873||31||14||145.3||270 yds, 4 TDs|
|Derek Carr, Fresno State||279-446||.626||3,544||26||9||144.5||—|
|Seth Doege, Texas Tech||398-581||.685||4,004||28||10||138.9||—|
|James Franklin, Missouri||238-376||.633||2,865||21||11||139.9||981 yds, 15 TDs|
|Blaine Gautier, UL Lafayette||216-344||.628||2,958||23||6||153.6||486 yds, 3 TDs|
|Mike Glennon, N.C. State||283-453||.625||3,054||31||12||136.4||—|
|Landry Jones, Oklahoma||355-562||.632||4,463||29||15||141.6||—|
|Collin Klein, Kansas State||161-281||.573||1,918||13||6||125.6||1,141 yds, 27 TDs|
|Taylor Martinez, Nebraska||162-288||.563||2,089||13||8||126.5||874 yds, 9 TDs|
|AJ McCarron, Alabama||219-328||.668||2,634||16||5||147.3||—|
|Aaron Murray, Georgia||238-403||.591||3,149||35||14||146.4||—|
|Casey Paschall, TCU||228-343||.665||2,921||25||7||158.0||—|
|Keith Price, Washington||242-362||.669||3,063||33||11||161.9||—|
|Bryn Renner, North Carolina||239-350||.683||3,086||26||13||159.4||—|
|Denard Robinson, Michigan||142-258||.550||2,173||20||15||139.7||1,176 yds, 16 TDs|
|Brett Smith, Wyoming||253-415||.610||2,622||20||11||124.6||710 yds, 10 TDs|
|Geno Smith, West Virginia||346-526||.658||4,385||31||7||152.6||—|
|Tyler Tettleton, Ohio||265-413||.642||3,306||28||10||148.9||658 yds, 10 TDs|
|Logan Thomas, Virginia Tech||234-391||.598||3,013||19||10||135.5||469 yds, 11 TDs|
|James Vandenberg, Iowa||237-404||.587||3,022||25||7||138.4||—|
|Tyler Wilson, Arkansas||277-438||.632||3,638||24||6||148.4||—|