West Virginia’s Will Grier earns Manning Award Quarterback of the Week
Will Grier, a senior from West Virginia University, has been selected as the Manning Award Quarterback of the Week. He earns the win over seven other Manning Award Stars of the Week in the Allstate Sugar Bowl’s Facebook contest. Grier led the Mountaineers to a convincing 40-14 win over Tennessee.
Opening the season at Bank America Stadium, home of the Carolina Panthers, in front of friends and family in his hometown of Charlotte, North Carolina, Grier completed 25-of-34 passes for a career-high 429 passing yards five touchdowns, while completing passes to 11 different Mountaineer receivers. He has thrown five touchdown passes a school-record four times. He has now won four Manning Award Quarterback of the Week honors.
Most of Grier’s passing yardage and touchdowns came in the second half as the Mountaineers ran up a 20-point third quarter and took control of the game after a 65-minute lighting delay at halftime. Along with being named a Manning Award Star of the Week, Grier was named the Walter Camp National Offensive Player of the Week and the Maxwell Award Player of the Week.
The No. 14 Mountaineers (1-0) play their home opener this Saturday evening against Youngstown State (0-1) in a game that will kick off at 6 p.m. and will be televised locally on AT&T Sportsnet.
Grier’s top competitors were McKenzie Milton of UCF and Hawaii’s Cole McDonald. Milton completed 24-of-32 passes for 346 yards and tied his career-best with five touchdowns, while also adding 50 rushing yards, as the Knights extended the nation’s longest winning streak to 14 games with a 56-17 AAC road win over Connecticut. McDonald, making his second career start, completed 30-of-41 passes for 428 yards and six touchdowns to lead the Rainbow Warrior offense to scores on its first five possessions, as it tallied 522 yards of offense in a 59-41 win over Navy.
In its first 14 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 (Mayfield, Vince Young, Colt McCoy and Robert Griffin III) joins the Southeastern Conference (Johnny Manziel, Cam Newton, JaMarcus Russell and Tim Tebow) and the Atlantic Coast Conference (Deshaun Watson twice, Matt Ryan and Jameis Winston) with four Manning Award winners each, while Texas is the only school with two different winners (McCoy 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.
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