FAYETTEVILLE - University of Arkansas quarterback Ryan Mallett has been named one of 10 finalists for the Manning Award, which is sponsored by the Allstate Sugar Bowl and presented to the nation's best quarterback following the bowls, it was announced Monday.
Mallett, who also was a finalist for the award last season, has completed 242-of-364 passes for 3,592 yards and 30 touchdowns. He is the fourth quarterback in SEC history to throw for 3,000 yards and 30 touchdowns in consecutive seasons and just the third to throw for more than 3,500 yards in back-to-back seasons. During his Razorback career, he has set or matched 38 different school or stadium records. His 299.3 passing yards per game lead the SEC and rank fifth in the NCAA, while his 30 touchdown passes lead the conference and rank sixth in the country. Mallett also leads the NCAA with five completions of 70 or more yards and four completions of 80 or more yards.
Mallett has thrown for at least 300 yards in an NCAA-high nine games this season, breaking his single-season school record from 2009 and extending his Arkansas career record to 14. Included was a 409-yard performance vs. Vanderbilt that broke the school record of 408 he put up in 2009. The Vanderbilt showing was the fourth 400-yard game of his career. Before the Texarkana, Ark., native came to Arkansas, the school had never had a 400-yard passer in a single game.
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 takes the candidates' bowl performances into consideration in its balloting.
The Manning Award will be recognizing its seventh winner this year. USC's Matt Leinart was the inaugural winner of the award in 2005, followed by Texas' Vince Young in 2006. Both went on to be top 10 NFL draft picks. In 2007, LSU's JaMarcus Russell earned the award and was the NFL's No. 1 draft pick. Boston College's Matt Ryan claimed the award in 2008 and was drafted No. 3, quickly becoming the starting quarterback for the Atlanta Falcons. In 2009, Florida star Tim Tebow earned the honor - he also went on to be selected in the first round of the NFL Draft. Last year's winner was Texas signal-caller Colt McCoy, the winningest quarterback in college football history. McCoy was selected by the Cleveland Browns in the 2010 NFL Draft.
The winner will be announced on Wednesday, Jan. 19 and honored at a ceremony in New Orleans.
2010 Manning Award Finalists
Andy Dalton, TCU
Colin Kaepernick, Nevada
Andrew Luck, Stanford
Ryan Mallett, Arkansas
Kellen Moore, Boise State
Cameron Newton, Auburn
Terrelle Pryor, Ohio State
Denard Robinson, Michigan
Darron Thomas, Oregon
Brandon Weeden, Oklahoma State