Allstate Sugar Bowl announces Manning Award Watch List

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Manning Award

National Honor Recognizes Top Quarterback in Country After Bowls

NEW ORLEANS – The Manning Award, sponsored by the Allstate Sugar Bowl, announced its preseason Watch List on Thursday. The list includes 32 of the top quarterbacks in the nation heading into the 2021 season. The winner will again be selected by a voting panel, which includes national media and each of the Mannings, after the bowls.

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.

“We’re really looking forward to a football season that has a little more sense of normalcy this fall,” said Archie Manning. “There’s so much talent among the returning quarterbacks with the super seniors and so many other top players returning. We have 32 outstanding quarterbacks on the preseason Watch List; and I’m expecting the midseason additions to be very impressive as well with a lot of young guys and transfers expected to make major contributions.”

Inclusion on the Watch List is not necessary for the quarterbacks to be selected for the honor. Additional quarterbacks are expected to be added to the Watch List during the season. Finalists will be selected prior to the postseason and the winner will be announced following the College Football Playoff National Championship.

“The Sugar Bowl has considered it a great honor to sponsor the Manning Award for the past 17 years,” said Allstate Sugar Bowl CEO Jeff Hundley.  “After the challenges of the 2020 season, we’re all hoping that these outstanding young quarterbacks will have the opportunity for a more traditional season this year. And after the bowls and the College Football Playoff, we’ll be able to recognize the top quarterback with this honor.”

This year’s Watch List includes players from all 10 Football Bowl Subdivision conferences. The ACC leads the way with five selections, while the Big 12 and the Sun Belt have four each. The AAC, Big Ten, MAC, Pac-12 and the SEC each have three selections.

Six of last year’s Manning Award finalists are included on this year’s Watch List: Matt Corral (Ole Miss), Dillon Gabriel (UCF), Sam Howell (North Carolina), Grayson McCall (Coastal Carolina), Brock Purdy (Iowa State) and Desmond Ridder (Cincinnati).

2021 Manning Award Preseason Watch List (2020 stats)

Name, Class, School

Cmp-Att

Pct.

Yards

TD

INT

QBR

Rushing

Cornelious Brown, So., Georgia St.

178-304

58.6

2,278

17

10

56.7

301 yds, 7 TDs

Sean Clifford, Jr., Penn St.

152-251

60.6

1,883

16

9

69.1

335 yds, 3 TDs

Matt Corral, Jr., Ole Miss

231-326

70.9

3,337

29

14

89.9

506 yds, 4 TDs

Dustin Crum, Sr., Kent St.

83-113

73.5

1,181

12

2

88.5

240 yds, 4 TDs

Malik Cunningham, Sr., Louisville

195-304

64.1

2,617

20

12

78.5

609 yds, 7 TDs

Jayden Daniels, Jr., Arizona St.

76-152

58.3

701

5

1

87.1

223 yds, 4 TDs

JT Daniels, Jr., Georgia

80-119

67.2

1,231

10

2

NA

NA

Max Duggan, Jr., TCU

146-240

60.8

1,795

10

4

68.9

526 yds, 10 TDs

Kaleb Eleby, Jr., Western Michigan

99-153

64.7

1,715

18

2

78.1

4 TDs

Dillon Gabriel, Jr., UCF

248-413

60.0

3,570

32

4

78

169 yds, 2 TDs

Chase Garbers, Sr., Cal

85-136

62.5

771

6

3

57.1

2 TDs

Frank Harris, Sr., UTSA

159-250

63.6

1,630

12

6

62.3

528 yds, 9 TDs

Layne Hatcher, Jr., Arkansas St.

116-194

59.8

2,058

19

2

69.7

NA

Sam Howell, Jr., North Carolina

237-348

68.1

3,586

30

7

79.3

146 yds, 5 TDs

Phil Jurkovec, Jr., Boston College

205-336

61.0

2,558

17

5

71.3

150 yds, 3 TDs

D’Eriq King, Sr., Miami

211-329

64.1

2,686

23

5

78

538 yds, 4 TDs

Levi Lewis, Sr., UL Lafayette

177-297

59.6

2,274

19

7

67.7

335 yds, 5 TDs

Grayson McCall, So., Coastal Carolina

172-250

68.8

2,488

26

3

82.2

569 yds, 7 TDs

Graham Mertz, So., Wisconsin

118-193

61.1

1,238

9

5

60.6

2 TDs

Bo Nix, Jr., Auburn

214-357

59.9

2,415

12

7

73.1

388 yds, 7 TDs

Michael Penix, Jr., Indiana

124-220

56.4

1,645

14

4

67.7

2 TDs

Kenny Pickett, Sr., Pittsburgh

203-332

61.1

2.408

13

9

60.9

145 yds, 8 TDs

Drew Plitt, Sr., Ball St.

164-250

65.6

2,154

17

6

62.4

49 yds, 4 TDs

Michael Pratt, So., Tulane

140-254

55.1

1,806

20

8

53.2

229 yds, 8 TDs

Brock Purdy, Sr., Iowa St.

243-365

66.6

2,750

19

9

78.8

382 yds, 5 TDs

Spencer Rattler, So., Oklahoma

214-317

67.5

3,031

28

7

81.2

160 yds, 6 TDs

Desmond Ridder, Sr., Cincinnati

186-281

66.2

2,296

19

6

80.9

592 yds, 12 TDs

Kedon Slovis, Jr., USC

177-264

67.0

1,921

17

7

75.7

NA

Nick Starkel, Sr., San Jose St.

163-254

64.2

2,174

17

7

68.8

NA

Carson Strong, So., Nevada

249-355

70.1

2,858

27

4

66.1

NA

Skylar Thompson, Sr., Kansas St.

40-64

62.5

626

4

0

NA

3 TDs

Malik Willis, Jr., Liberty

170-265

64.2

2,260

20

6

78.7

944 yds, 14 TDs

 
In its first 17 years, the Manning Award has recognized the top names in college football. It has honored quarterbacks from 13 different schools and from four different conferences. The Southeastern Conference (Joe Burrow, Mac Jones, Johnny Manziel, Cam Newton, JaMarcus Russell and Tim Tebow) leads the way with six Manning Award honorees, while the Big 12 Conference (Kyler Murray, Baker Mayfield, Vince Young, Colt McCoy and Robert Griffin III) has had five winners. The Atlantic Coast Conference (Deshaun Watson twice, Matt Ryan and Jameis Winston) has had four Manning Award winners. LSU (Burrow and Russell), Oklahoma (Murray and Mayfield) and Texas (McCoy and Young) are the only schools with two different winners.

Statistically, the Manning Award has seen a wide-range of quarterbacks. Fourteen of the Manning Award men threw for over 3,000 yards in their winning campaign, including 4,000-yard seasons from Burrow, Griffin III, Jones, Marcus Mariota, Mayfield, Murray, Ryan, Watson (twice) and Winston. On the other hand, Manziel, Murray, Newton, Watson (in 2015) and Young were all 1,000-yard rushers during their Manning years.

Perhaps most impressive among the statistics of the quarterbacks recognized by the Manning Award is touchdowns scored. Twelve of the winners accounted for over 40 touchdowns during their successful seasons – Burrow’s 65 touchdowns (60 passing, five rushing) broke Mariota’s record (58 in 2014) for touchdowns by a Manning Award winner.

One of the more unique aspects of the Manning Award is the fact that it takes account of the quarterbacks’ bowl performances, in addition to the regular season. Fourteen of the 17 Manning Award winners won bowl games during the season they won the honor. Twelve Manning Award honorees led their teams to the CFP Semifinals or a BCS Championship game appearance (Burrow, Jones, Matt Leinart, Mariota, Mayfield, McCoy, Murray, Newton, Tebow, Watson, Winston and Young). Eight won national championships (Burrow, Jones, Leinart, Newton, Tebow, Watson, Winston and Young).

Previous Manning Award winners have also factored prominently in the NFL Draft as they all heard their names called on Draft Day. Six honorees were selected No. 1 overall (Burrow, Mayfield, Murray, Newton, Russell and Winston), while four others went No. 2 or No. 3 (Griffin, Mariota, Ryan and Young).

All the Manning Award winners follow in the footsteps of the Mannings themselves. In college, Archie, Peyton and Eli Manning combined for over 25,000 passing yards and 201 touchdowns while playing in 10 bowl games and earning four bowl MVP awards. Archie was the No. 2 pick in the NFL Draft, while both Peyton and Eli were selected No. 1 overall.

In addition to the Manning Award’s yearly honor, each week during the regular season, eight quarterbacks are recognized as Manning Quarterbacks of the Week. Seventy-three players from 66 different schools were honored during the 2020 season and 424 different quarterbacks from 129 schools have been recognized since 2011.

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