New Haven, Conn. – Two quarterbacks – senior Collin Klein (Kansas State) and redshirt freshman Johnny Manziel (Texas A&M) – lead the list of five finalists for the Walter Camp Football Foundation 2012 Player of the Year award.
Two players from the Pac-12 Conference – Oregon running back Kenjon Barner and USC wide receiver Marqise Lee -- round out the list along with linebacker Manti Te’o from top-ranked Notre Dame.
The 2012 Walter Camp Player of the Year recipient, who is voted on by the Football Bowl Subdivision head coaches and sports information directors, will be announced on Thursday, December 6 during the 6 p.m. edition of ESPN SportsCenter.
Former Stanford University quarterback Andrew Luck, now playing in the NFL for the Indianapolis Colts, won the award last year.
The winner will receive his trophy at the Foundation’s annual national awards banquet on Saturday, January 12, 2013 at the Yale University Commons in New Haven. The Foundation is offering a "Holiday Ticket Promotion" for the National Awards Dinner. Buy two tickets for $400 (you save $150) before December 25. Please call (203) 288-CAMP (288-2267) for more information.
Walter Camp, “The Father of American football,” first selected an All-America team in 1889. Camp – a former Yale University athlete and football coach – is also credited with developing play from scrimmage, set plays, the numerical assessment of goals and tries and the restriction of play to eleven men per side. The Walter Camp Football Foundation – a New Haven-based all-volunteer group – was founded in 1967 to perpetuate the ideals of Camp and continue the tradition of selecting an annual All-America team.
The Walter Camp Football Foundation is a member of the National College Football Awards Association (NCFAA). The NCFAA was founded in 1997 as a coalition of the major collegiate football awards to protect, preserve and enhance the integrity, influence and prestige of the game’s predominant awards. The NCFAA encourages professionalism and the highest standards for the administration of its member awards and the selection of their candidates and recipients. Visit http://www.ncfaa.org.
The finalists for the 2012 Walter Camp Player of the Year award:
KENJON BARNER – OREGON – Senior – Running Back – Kenjon Barner ranks fourth in the nation in rushing yards per game (135.33) for the 11-1 Ducks… He has totaled 1,624 rushing yards (on 248 attempts) and 21 touchdowns on the season… Barner’s 22 total touchdowns rank sixth in the nation… Barner has seven 100-yard rushing efforts on the season, including a career-high 321-yard effort – with five touchdowns – in a win over USC on November 3.
COLLIN KLEIN – KANSAS STATE – Senior – Quarterback – Collin Klein has led the Wildcats to a 10-1 record entering Saturday’s regular-season finale versus Texas… Klein has passed for 2,306 yards and 14 touchdowns, completing 172-of-258 passes… He has thrown for 200 or more yards in a game six times… A dual threat, Klein has rushed for 787 more yards and 20 touchdowns…. He has rushed for two or more touchdowns in a game six times this season.
MARQISE LEE – USC – Sophomore – Wide Receiver – Second in the nation in receiving yards per game (140.0), Marqise Lee has totaled 112 catches for 1,680 yards and 14 touchdowns for the 7-5 Trojans... Lee has also returned 28 kickoffs for 802 yards (28.6 yards per return) and one touchdown… His best game came against Arizona on October 27 when he had 16 catches for 345 yards and two touchdowns.
JOHNNY MANZIEL – TEXAS A&M – Redshirt Freshman – Quarterback – Johnny Manziel ranks second in the nation in total offense (383.3 yards per game) for the 10-2 Aggies… He has passed for 3,419 yards and 24 touchdowns, completing 273-of-400 throws… Manziel has thrown for 200 or more yards nine times this season… He has rushed for 1,181 yards and 19 touchdowns, including six 100-yard efforts… His best game came in a win over Louisiana Tech on October 13 when he accounted for six touchdowns (3 rushing; 3 passing) and 576 yards (395 passing, 181 rushing), which earned him Walter Camp Offensive Player of the Week honors.
MANTI TE’O – NOTRE DAME – Senior – Linebacker – Te’o is the leader of the top-ranked Fighting Irish (12-0) defensive unit that ranks second in the nation in scoring defense (10.3 points allowed per game) and sixth in total defense (287.3 yards allowed per game)… Te’o has totaled 103 tackles (8.6 tackles per game) and ranks third in the nation with seven interceptions…Has played a role in 11 of Notre Dame’s 23 turnovers this year (7 interceptions, 2 fumble recoveries and 2 pass hurries that directly led to interceptions).