By Blair Willis / UA Sports
Arizona quarterback Khalil Tate is one of 16 semifinalists in contention for the Davey O’Brien National Quarterback Award, it was announced on Tuesday. The award is presented annually to the best college quarterback and is the nation’s oldest and most prestigious national quarterback award.
One of four sophomores to make the semifinalist list, Tate burst onto the national scene with a record-setting month in which he led the Wildcats to their first undefeated October since 1992. In the process, Tate became the first Pac-12 quarterback to be named the league’s Offensive Player of the Week in four consecutive weeks. His first such honor came following a 327-yard rushing performance at Colorado on Oct. 7, a game in which Tate set the FBS single-game rushing record for quarterbacks.
A native of Inglewood, Calif., Tate has become the first Pac-12 quarterback to rush for 1,000 yards in a season. Through seven games played, he has netted 1,087 yards with nine touchdowns on only 95 carries, and his 11.4 average leads all FBS players. On the nine touchdown runs alone, has totaled 481 yards for an average of 53.4 yards per score. Additionally, Tate has rushed for 1,001 yards in his last five games as the Wildcats’ primary quarterback, a tally that leads all FBS players since Oct. 1.
As a passer, Tate has completed 60-of-98 attempts for 930 yards and eight touchdowns this season. He has a 61.2-percent completion percentage, a 157.67 pass efficiency rating and his 96.1 QBR is tops among all FBS quarterbacks.
Tate, who last week was named a semifinalist for the Maxwell Award, has totaled 2,017 yards of offense this season. In the last five games alone, Tate has totaled 1,890 yards of offense, which is an average of 378.0 yards per game and 10.9 yards per play (rush and pass attempts). He’s accounted for 17 touchdowns over that five-game span.
Others in contention for the Davey O’Brien Award include, in alphabetical order: J.T. Barrett (Ohio State), Jake Browning (Washington), Kelly Bryant (Clemson), Sam Darnold (USC), Luke Falk (Washington State), Riley Ferguson (Memphis), Nick Fitzgerald (Mississippi State), Will Grier (West Virginia), Kenny Hill (TCU), Jalen Hurts (Alabama), Lamar Jackson (Louisville), Baker Mayfield (Oklahoma), Trace McSorley (Penn State), McKenzie Milton (UCF) and Mason Rudolph (Oklahoma State).
The Davey O’Brien Fan Vote counts as five percent during each round of the voting process, and is combined with the results from the Foundation’s national selection committee, which is comprised of journalists, broadcasters, commentators and former winners.
After clearing the first round totals, the Fan Vote at VoteOBrien.org will reopen today (Nov. 7) and remain open until noon (CT) on Sunday, Nov. 19, for the second round of balloting. Fans are invited to cast their vote for the nation’s best college quarterback as often as once daily per email address.
In conjunction with ESPN, the Davey O’Brien Foundation and the Selection Committee will release the names of the three finalists on Tuesday, Nov. 21. The 2017 Davey O’Brien winner will be announced live on The Home Depot College Football Awards Thursday, Dec. 7.
Arizona (6-3, 4-2 Pac-12) closes out its home schedule this Saturday, Nov. 11, as the Wildcats welcome Oregon State (1-8, 0-6 Pac-12) to Tucson. The game will be televised live on ESPN2 beginning at 8:15 p.m. (MST).
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