Mississippi State’s K.J. Costello named Manning Award Quarterback of the Week

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KJ Costello
Mississippi St. Bulldogs play against the LSU Tigers during a game in Tiger Stadium in Baton Rouge, Louisiana on September 26, 2020. (Photo by: Chris Parent / LSU Athletics)

NEW ORLEANS (October 1, 2020) – K.J. Costello, a graduate student at Mississippi State University, has been selected as the Manning Award Quarterback of the Week. He earns the honor over seven other Manning Award Stars of the Week in the Allstate Sugar Bowl’s Facebook contest.

Facebook Voting Results

Costello, making his Mississippi State debut, set MSU records with 36 completions and 60 attempts, while shattering the SEC record for passing yards with 623. His five TD passes led the Bulldogs to a 44-34 SEC win over defending national champion LSU on the road.

The Rancho Santa Margarita, California, native completed 15 passes of 20 yards or more and found 10 different receivers during the game. He kept the offense rolling on third downs, going 7-of-11 passing for 194 yards. Costello, who was also named the SEC Offensive Player of the Week, is a graduate transfer who already has his degree in political science from Stanford.

The Bulldogs will open their home slate against Arkansas this Saturday, Oct. 3, at 6:30 p.m. CT in a game to be televised by the SEC Network.

Costello won this week’s award over UCF’s Dillon Gabriel, who won last week, and Skylar Thompson of Kansas State. Gabriel notched his second straight 400-yard/4-TD performance as he completed 32-of-47 passes for 408 yards and four touchdowns in a 51-28 AAC road win over East Carolina. Thompson rushed for three scores while completing 18-of-25 passes for a career-high 334 yards and one touchdown through the air as he led the Wildcats to 24 straight points to close a stunning 38-35 Big 12 upset of No. 3 Oklahoma on the road.

While the Manning Award selected 30 quarterbacks for its preseason Watch List, additional quarterbacks are expected to be added to the Watch List later in the season. Ten finalists will be selected and the winner is scheduled to be announced following the College Football Playoff National Championship.

In its first 16 years, the Manning Award has recognized the top names in college football. It has honored quarterbacks from 12 different schools and from four different conferences. The Big 12 Conference (Kyler Murray, Baker Mayfield, Vince Young, Colt McCoy and Robert Griffin III) and the Southeastern Conference (Joe Burrow, Johnny Manziel, Cam Newton, JaMarcus Russell and Tim Tebow) lead the way with five Manning Award honorees each, while and the Atlantic Coast Conference (Deshaun Watson twice, Matt Ryan and Jameis Winston) has had four Manning Award winners. LSU (Burrow and Russell) joins Oklahoma (Murray and Mayfield) and Texas (McCoy and Young) as the only schools with two different winners.

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.

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