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Mariota Wins Three Awards, Heisman is Next

While college football, with the exception of Army and Navy, takes a collective break to catch its breath preparing for bowl games and national championships, awards were handed out on Thursday night.

On a night of football awards at the Home Depot College Football Awards Show the big winner was Marcus Mariota the Oregon Ducks quarterback.

The star quarterback for Oregon was the winner of the Maxwell Award that honors the most outstanding player in the country and the Davey O’Brien National Quarterback Award. He also was given the Walter Camp award for player of the year.

Mariota called the night surreal for him. He said while growing up he always saw these types of awards, but now being there and part of the fraternity it is a complete blessing to him.

Mariota said his accolades have capped a personal journey for him. He is from Hawaii, quiet and reserved but since playing and leading Oregon has become vocal and part of a great team effort.

The soft-spoken Mariota said his teammates and coaches needed to be thanked for the way he has grown. He said his teammates asked him to step up, be vocal and accept that his words are powerful.

Mariota becomes the first Oregon player to win the three awards. He is also a finalist for the Heisman Trophy that will be handed out Saturday night in New York City.

Seven of the last eight winners of the O’Brien award have also won the Heisman.

Mariota is No. 1 in the country in passing efficiency at 186.3. He passed for 38 touchdowns and ran for 15, setting a new record in the Pac-12 with 53.

He has led Oregon to the No. 2 seed for the College Football Playoff. The Ducks will play Florida State the No. 3 seed on January 1 in the Rose Bowl, with the winner playing for the national championship against the winner of Alabama and Ohio State.

Others who had been the finalist for the Camp awards included Melvin Gordon a running back from Wisconsin, Trevone Boykin a quarterback at TCU, Amari Cooper a wide receiver at Alabama and Scooby Wright III a linebacker for Arizona.

Last year’s winner of the trophy was Jameis Winston the Florida State quarterback.

Mariota is the second player from the Pac-12 to win the O’Brien award in the past four years. In 2011, Stanford’s Andrew Luck now with the Indianapolis Colts won the coveted trophy.

The Doak Walker Award, which honors the best running back in the country, was won by Melvin Gordon. The junior tailback is the third Wisconsin player to win the coveted trophy joining Ron Dayne the 1999 winner and Montee Ball the 2012 winner.

Gordon has 2,336 rushing yards to go with 26 touchdowns.

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