Penn State University’s Saquon Barkley wins Hornung Award
UNIVERSITY PARK — Junior running back Saquon Barkley (Coplay, Pa.) has been selected as the Paul Hornung Award winner for the most versatile player in college football. He is the first Penn State player to win the honor and the second-straight Big Ten student-athlete (Michigan’s Jabrill Peppers). Barkley will be recognized at the annual Paul Hornung Award Banquet in Louisville, Kentucky on March 7, 2018.
“It is an honor to win an award like the Paul Hornung Award for the most versatile player in college football,” Barkley said. “I am so appreciative of Mr. Hornung and the Louisville Sports Commission for selecting me for this very special honor. I have to give a lot of the credit to my teammates and coaches, they are the reason that I am in position to win this award and I could not have done it without them. I also want to thank our amazing fans at Penn State. We Are!”
“I am thrilled for Saquon to join this elite list of Paul Hornung Award winners,” head coach James Franklin said. “I couldn’t be more proud of Saquon and everything he has accomplished at Penn State. In my 22 years of coaching, I have never coached or seen a player who can affect the game the way Saquon Barkley does. The Hornung Award is not only honoring the most versatile player in college football, but is also recognizing one of the best people in college football.”
Barkley has already collected several honors this season, dominating the Big Ten major awards, winning 2017 Graham-George Big Ten Offensive Player of the Year, 2017 Ameche-Dayne Big Ten Running Back of the Year and 2017 Rodgers-Dwight Big Ten Return Specialist of the Year. He is also a finalist for three other national awards — Maxwell Award, Doak Walker Award, Walter Camp Player of the Year Award. The winner of those awards will be announced Thursday.
Saquon Barkley, RB, Jr./Jr.,
5-11, 230, Coplay, Pa./Whitehall
-2017 Paul Hornung Award winner (most versatile player in college football)
-Is the first Penn State player to win the Paul Hornung Award.
-Is the second-straight Big Ten player to win the Hornung Award (Jabrill Peppers, Michigan).
-Selected as a finalist for the Maxwell Award, Doak Walker Award and Walter Camp Player of the Year Award.
-Is the second player in conference history to win three major awards, joining Michigan’s Jabrill Peppers (Defensive Player of the Year, Linebacker of the Year, Return Specialist of the Year) in 2016.
-2017 Graham-George Big Ten Offensive Player of the Year.
-Is the first back-to-back Big Ten Offensive Player of the Year since Ohio State’s Braxton Miller (2012 & 2013).
-Is the third player to win multiple Big Ten Offensive Player of the Year honors (Miller; Drew Brees, Purdue in 1998 & 2000).
-Is the first running back to win multiple Big Ten Offensive Player of the Year honors.
-This is the fifth time a Penn State player has won Big Ten Offensive Player of the Year (Kerry Collins, 1994; Curtis Enis, 1997; Michael Robinson, 2005; Barkley, 2016).
-Is the first Penn State player to win Big Ten OPOY twice.
-This is the fourth consecutive year that a running back has won the award.
-2017 Ameche-Dayne Big Ten Running Back of the Year.
-Is the first player to win back-to-back Big Ten Running Back of the Year since Wisconsin’s Montee Ball (2011 & 2012).
-2017 Rodgers-Dwight Big Ten Return Specialist of the Year.
-Is the first Penn State player to be Return Specialist of the Year (award established in 2015).
-First-team all-conference running back.
-First-team All-Big Ten return specialist.
-Second-straight first-team All-Big Ten selection by the coaches and media.
-Marks the third all-conference honor of his career after first team bid in 2016 and second team berth in 2015.
-Is just the second running back in Penn State history to earn back-to-back first team honors, joining Curtis Enis (1996 & 1997).
-Is the first Penn State player to be named all-conference return specialist (added in 2015).
-Is 1-of-5 student-athlete in the FBS with four all-purpose plays of 80 yards or longer in 2017.
-Ranks No. 2 in the FBS and leads the Big Ten in all-purpose yards (179.50).
-Ranks No. 4 nationally and leads the Big Ten in kickoff return touchdowns (2).
-Ranks No. 10 in the FBS and leads the Big Ten in kickoff return average (28.4).
-Is the 24th FBS player to produce 1,000 rushing yards and 500 receiving yards in a season since 2000.
-Sits tied for No. 5 nationally and leads the Big Ten lead in total touchdowns (21).
-Is tied for No. 7 nationally and leads the Big Ten in scoring per game (10.5).
-Ranks No. 10 in the FBS and leads the Big Ten in rushing touchdowns (16).
-Owns nine games with 200-plus all-purpose yards in his career (four in 2016, five in 2017).
-His six Player of the Week honors in 2017 (four offensive, two special teams) are the most in a single season in Big Ten history.
-Is tied for the program single season record with two kickoff return touchdowns, equaling the marks of Chuck Peters (1940), Curt Warner (1980) and Derrick Williams (2008).
-Ranks No. 2 on the single season all-purpose yards list with 2,154 yards in 2017, just the second player in program history to eclipse the 2,000 all-purpose yard mark (Larry Johnson, 2,655; 2002).
-Set the single game all-purpose yards mark with 358 at Iowa (9/23/17), accounting for 211 yards rushing, 94 yards receiving and 53 yards on kickoff return, topping Curt Warner’s previous mark of 341 vs. Syracuse in 1981.
-Earned Midseason All-America honors from The All-American, Associated Press, CBSSports.com, ESPN.com, Sporting News, Sports Illustrated (RB & all-purpose)and USA Today.
-Named Big Ten Co-Offensive Player of the Week (Barrett, OSU) on Sept. 4 after rushing for 174 yards and totaling 246 all-purpose yards vs. Akron.
-Earned Big Ten Rose Bowl Player of the Week on Sept. 5 after his effort vs. Akron in the season opener.
-Selected to the Paul Hornung Award Honor Roll on Sept. 11 after posting 183 all-purpose yards and two touchdowns vs. Pittsburgh.
-Named Big Ten Offensive Player of the Week on Sept. 25 after breaking the school record for all-purpose yards (358) vs. Iowa.
-Graded out as the top offensive player in the FBS during week four by Pro Football Focus to earn a spot on the National Team of the Week.
-The effort vs. Iowa also earned him Rose Bowl Big Ten Player of the Week and Maxwell Award Player of the Week, along with a spot on the Hornung Award Honor Roll and Pro Football Focus Big Ten Team of the Week.
-Named Big Ten Special Teams Player of the Week and garnered a spot on the Hornung Award Honor Roll on Oct. 2 after posting 205 all-purpose yards vs. Indiana, including a 98-yard kickoff return for the touchdown to open the game.
-Garnered Big Ten Offensive Player of the Week, along with earning a spot on the Hornung Award Honor Roll, on Oct. 23 after piling up 176 all-purpose yards vs. Michigan.
-Added his second Big Ten Special Teams Player of the Week Award on Oct. 30 after returning the opening kickoff for a touchdown at Ohio State.
-Garnered Big Ten Player of the Week and a spot on the Pro Football Focus Big Ten Team of the Week after logging 224 all-purpose yards vs. Nebraska (11/18).
-Scored a touchdown in 15-straight games from Oct. 29, 2016-Oct. 28, 2017, which set the Penn State school record, passing Curtis Enis’ 14-game streak from 1996-97.
-Had a streak of nine-straight games with a rushing touchdown snapped vs. Georgia State, which was the longest streak by a Penn Stater since Larry Johnson had 11 in a row in 2002.
The ninth-ranked Nittany Lions win face No. 11 Washington in the Playstation Fiesta Bowl Saturday, Dec. 30 at 4 p.m. (ET) in Glendale, Arizona.