Oklahoma quarterback Kyler Murray won the Davey O’Brien Award as the nation’s top quarterback on Thursday night.
Murray, who plans to focus on baseball in the future, had a 96.0 quarterback rating, the highest in the Football Bowl Subdivision in at least the past 15 years, and was responsible for 51 touchdowns, tied with Ohio State quarterback Dwayne Haskins for the most in FBS. He is on pace to become the first FBS starting quarterback to average at least 300 passing yards per game and 60 rushing yards per game.
He beat out Alabama quarterback Tua Tagovailoa and Washington State’s Gardner Minshew II for the award, which kicked off the College Football Awards show in Atlanta.
Earlier in the day, the Walter Camp Award for best player went to Tagovailoa, while Murray won the Associated Press’ Player of the Year — setting up a showdown for Saturday night when those two players and Haskins contend for the Heisman Trophy.
The last five winners of the Walter Camp have gone on to win the Heisman, but only five Heisman winners have failed to win AP Player of the Year since the award started in 1998.
Murray’s Davey O’Brien marked the sixth time an Oklahoma QB claimed the honor, after Baker Mayfield — who won last year — Sam Bradford in 2008, Jason White in both 2003 and 2004 and Billy Sims in 1978. The five different quarterbacks snaps a tie with BYU for the most by any school.
Jim Thorpe Award: Georgia’s Deandre Baker received the award for outstanding defensive back. Named to the All-SEC first team by both the AP and coaches, he had two interceptions and nine passes broken up.
Doak Walker Award: Jonathan Taylor became the fourth Wisconsin player to be named the nation’s top running back after Ron Dayne in 1999, Montee Ball in 2012 and Melvin Gordon in 2014. He leads the FBS with 1,989 yards and has rushed for 100 yards in 11 of 12 games this season.
Lou Groza Award: Syracuse’s Andre Szmyt was named the top placekicker after leading the FBS with 28 field goals, three more than any other player and setting a school record with 141 points. He is the first Syracuse player to win the award, and the first from the ACC since Florida State’s Roberto Aguayo in 2013.