Meet the Manning Finalists – Ryan Mallett park
Ryan Mallett (Arkansas, sophomore) leads the SEC in total offense and ranks 15th nationally with 3,387 yards. He also leads the league and ranks seventh nationally in passing touchdowns with 29. Mallett is first in the SEC and sixth in the nation in pass efficiency (157.8). He is the only SEC quarterback to have thrown for 400 yards in a game this season, which he has done twice, and he leads the league in 300-yard passing performances with five. On the season, he has completed 210-of-367 passes for 3,425 yards with 29 touchdowns and just seven interceptions. In 12 games as a Razorback, he has matched or broken 16 different school records. On Jan. 2, Mallett will take his Razorbacks to face East Carolina in the Liberty Bowl at 4:30 p.m. CT on ESPN.
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 takes into consideration the candidates' bowl performances.
The first five winners of the Manning Award reads like a Who's Who list at the quarterback position. 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. Last season's winner was Florida's Tim Tebow, who is making his bid to become the first two-time winner of the honor this year.