FAYETTEVILLE – University of Arkansas quarterback Tyler Wilson has been named one of 15 finalists for the 2012 Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award, it was announced Thursday.
Wilson’s average of 7.38 yards of total offense per play in his career is the highest for an active SEC player and the second-highest average among active players in the NCAA. The senior from Greenwood, Ark., leads the SEC and ranks eighth in the NCAA with his average of 317.0 passing yards per game. He also ranks second in the SEC and 16th in the NCAA with an average of 318.4 yards of total offense per game.
Wilson leads the SEC and ranks second in the NCAA with his average of 15.69 yards per completion this season. He also leads the SEC and ranks fourth in the NCAA with an average of 8.56 yards of total offense per play and is tied for the SEC lead and for seventh in the NCAA with 18 passes of 25 or more yards. He ranks second in the SEC and 12th in the NCAA with his average of 9.11 yards per pass attempt.
Wilson holds 12 school records, including career completion percentage at 61.7, and is 13-5 as the Razorbacks’ starting quarterback. He has accounted for the top-two single-game passing yards and total offense yards totals and produced three of the top-four single-game pass completions totals in school history. He ranks third in school history in career passing yards with 5,963, and is fifth on the school’s all-time career lists with 40 passing touchdowns, 5,919 yards of total offense and 445 completions. He stands sixth in UA history with 721 career pass attempts, eighth on the touchdown responsibility list with 44 and 10th on the school’s all-time career total plays list at 802.
In addition to his on-field accomplishments, Wilson participated in commencement ceremonies in May and is finishing an internship this semester for his bachelor’s degree in sports management. He was selected as a team captain in 2011 and 2012 and has participated in numerous community service activities.
Candidates for the Golden Arm Award must be completing their college eligibility or be a fourth-year junior, on schedule to graduate with his class and are judged upon character, citizenship, scholastic achievement, leadership qualities, and athletic accomplishments.
The 2012 winner will be presented with his award on Friday, Dec. 7 in Baltimore, Md., at the Royal Sonesta Harbor Court Hotel.
Proceeds from the Golden Arm Award help to support the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Educational Foundation. The Foundation provides financial assistance to underprivileged and deserving young scholar-athletes throughout Maryland and Kentucky.
The namesake of the Golden Arm Award has a storied history. Johnny Unitas was an 18-year veteran of the NFL, who played his collegiate career at the University of Louisville before joining the Baltimore Colts in 1958. His career passing figures include 2,830 pass completions for 40,239 yards, 290 touchdowns and the former NFL record of throwing a touchdown pass in 47 consecutive games.
Unitas was inducted into Pro Football’s Hall of Fame in 1979. Further, the Hall of Fame, in commemorations of the NFL’s 25th, 50th, and 75th anniversaries selected Unitas as the top quarterback of all-time. In turn-of-the-century listings, he was named to Sports Illustrated list of top 10 athletes, Time Magazine’s list of 10 most influential athletes, and ESPN’s series on the 50 greatest athletes of the century.
To keep up with Wilson and the rest of the Arkansas football postseason awards campaign, follow @ARKTD2012 on Twitter.