Stanford Cardinal QB Andrew Luck has emerged as an early favorite for the 2011 Heisman Trophy, leading primarily a pack of quarterbacks and running backs. Since Luck is the Heisman favorite, it should not be surprising that he is also on the watch list for the 2011 Davey O'Brien Award. Luck was a finalist in 2010, falling to Cam Newton just as he did in the Heisman balloting. Luck is back this year looking to become the first Pac-10 (now Pac-12) quarterback to win the award since Troy Aikman in 1988.
This year's watch list includes Luck and fellow finalist Kellen Moore. Additionally, the Pac-12 is represented by Luck, Matt Barkley (USC Trojans), Nick Foles (Arizona Wildcats), Darron Thomas (Oregon Ducks). While they likely won't all end up in a dead heat, their head-to-head matchups could help in eliminating one or more of them. 16 semfinalists for the award will be announced on October 24 and three finalists will be announced on November 21. The winner will be announced on The Home Depot College Football Awards Show on December 8.
The award goes to the nation's best quarterback based on a variety of criteria including quarterback skills/athletic ability, academics, reputation as a team player, character, leadership, and sportsmanship. The selection committee consists of former award winners as well as a host of media members from across the country. Additionally, the fans will have a say in the voting with a Fan Vote counting for 5% during each round of the voting process.