Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel, a contender to become the first freshman to win the Heisman Trophy in the award’s 77-year history, was selected today as one of five finalists for the Walter Camp Player of the Year Award.
Manziel, a redshirt freshman, was joined on the list of finalists by Kansas State quarterback Collin Klein, Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te’o, Oregon running back Kenjon Barner and Southern California receiver Marquise Lee. The winner will be announced Dec. 6.
Below is a look at each of the finalists, based on current statistics:
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 – Junior – 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 in a win over 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).
_ Jimmy Burch