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Manning Award List Tabs Tech's Joshua Nesbitt

July 30, 2010

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Georgia Tech senior quarterback Joshua Nesbitt was named to the Manning Award preseason watch list Friday.

The Manning Award, established in 2004 and sponsored by the Allstate Sugar Bowl, recognizes the nation’s top college quarterback.

Below is the press release sent out Friday by the Allstate Sugar Bowl:

A non-traditional quarterback who has proven to be a virtuoso running Georgia Tech’s triple-option attack, Joshua Nesbitt is the latest addition to the Manning Award Watch List.

Nesbitt is the most prolific rushing quarterback in Yellow Jacket history with 2,079 yards on the ground, but he also averaged 10.5 yards per pass attempt, best in the nation among players with 150 attempts. The Manning Award, sponsored by the Allstate Sugar Bowl, is releasing the Watch List one player per day through its official Facebook and Twitter pages. The award has honored the top quarterback in the nation for the past six years.

Last season, Nesbitt led Georgia Tech to its first ACC Championship since 1990 and its first Orange Bowl since 1962 as he turned in a rare double 1,000 – passing (1,701) and rushing (1,037) for over 1,000 yards in the same season. He ranked fifth nationally among quarterbacks in rushing and rushed for 90 or more yards six times. His 18 rushing touchdowns ranked seventh in the nation and were the second-most in school history.

In a thrilling 39-34 ACC Championship game victory over Clemson, Nesbitt rushed for 103 yards and a score and passed for 136 yards and a TD. Despite sitting out spring practice to recover from ankle surgery, all reports have the senior at 100-percent for 2010. The Yellow Jackets welcome South Carolina State to Bobby Dodd Stadium on Sept. 4.

The Manning Award was created by the Allstate Sugar Bowl in 2004 to honor of the college football accomplishments of Archie, Peyton and Eli Manning. It is the only quarterback award that takes into consideration the candidates’ bowl performances. Ten finalists will be selected in late-November and the winner will be announced after the bowls in January and will be honored at a ceremony in New Orleans.

The preseason Watch List recognizes some of the top quarterbacks in the nation based on previous collegiate performance, however, every quarterback in the nation remains eligible for the honor. Additional quarterbacks may be added to the Watch List after the start of the season. The list of 10 finalists will be released on Monday, Nov. 29. The winner will be announced on Wednesday, Jan. 19.

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 picked by the Cleveland Browns in the 2010 NFL Draft.

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