University of Hawai’i sophomore Cole McDonald was among 15 additions to the 2018 Manning Award Watch List, given to the nation’s most outstanding quarterback.
McDonald is one of 45 players on the pre-season/mid-season watch list which includes three Hawaii natives, Tua Tagovailoa (Saint Louis/Alabama), McKenzie Milton (Mililani/UCF), and Jordan Ta’amu (Pearl City/Ole Miss).
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The award was created by the Allstate Sugar Bowl in honor of the college football accomplishments of Archie, Peyton, and Eli Manning. It is the only quarterback award that includes the candidate’s bowl performances in its balloting.
McDonald is the first UH quarterback to be named to the watch list since Bryant Moniz, who was honored in 2010 and ’11. Former Warrior Colt Brennan was a finalist for the award in 2006.
Two weeks ago, the La Mirada, Calif., native was also added to the watch list of the Maxwell Award, given to the nation’s top player. Through seven games this season, McDonald has thrown for 2,348 yards and 26 touchdowns and has eclipsed the 300-yard mark five times. He ranks in the nation’s Top 10 in seven total categories.
McDonald was one of two Mountain West quarterbacks to be added along with Fresno State’s Marcus McMaryion.
Finalists for the award will be determined by a selected panel of national media covering college football as well as each of the Mannings. That list will be released on Thursday, Nov. 29 and the winner is scheduled to be announced following the College Football Playoff National Championship.
In its 14 years, the Manning Award has recognized the top names in college football. It has honored quarterbacks from 12 different schools and from four different conferences. One of the more unique aspects of the Manning Award is the fact that it takes account of the quarterbacks’ bowl performances, in addition to the regular season. Twelve of the 14 Manning Award winners won bowl games during the season they won the honor.
Previous Manning Award winners have also factored prominently in the NFL Draft as they all heard their names called on Draft Day. Four honorees were selected No. 1 overall (Mayfield, Newton, Russell and Winston), while four others went No. 2 or No. 3 (Griffin, Mariota, Ryan and Young).