FORT WORTH, Texas (Oct. 8, 2015) – Six schools that have combined to go 26-2, three of which are starting first-year quarterbacks in their systems, comprise the three Davey O’Brien National Quarterback Award’s Marquee Matchups for week six.
In a Saturday matinee affair, Keenan Reynolds of Navy and DeShone Kizer of Notre Dame will square off in a long-standing rivalry game. At the same time, Northwestern’s Clayton Thorson and Michigan’s Jake Rudock will take part in a key Big Ten Conference game. The nightcap features California’s Jared Goff and Utah’s Travis Wilson in a top-25 tilt between the Pac-12’s final remaining unbeaten teams.
Throughout the season, the Davey O’Brien Award highlights the best weekly quarterback matchups as the race for the oldest and most prestigious national quarterback award continues. Fans are invited to help select the Marquee Matchups each week by voicing their opinions on Twitter at @DaveyOBrien using #MarqueeQB.
Quarterbacks from all 128 NCAA Division I Football Bowl Subdivision schools are eligible for the Davey O’Brien National Quarterback Award until the field is narrowed to 16 semifinalists on Monday, Nov. 2. The three finalists will be named on Tuesday, Nov. 24, while the 2015 Davey O’Brien winner will be announced on The Home Depot College Football Awards airing Thursday, Dec. 10 on ESPN.
Marquee Matchup #1: Navy (Keenan Reynolds) at No. 15 Notre Dame (DeShone Kizer)
Saturday, Oct. 10 at 2:30 p.m. (CT) on NBC
Keenan Reynolds, whose 73 career rushing touchdowns are just four shy of the all-time NCAA record, has found the end zone nine times on the ground in 2015, tying for the sixth most in the nation. The senior averages 122.0 rushing yards per game, a figure that ranks first among quarterbacks and 18th among all players.
For the second consecutive week, DeShone Kizer finds himself in a Davey O’Brien Marquee Matchup. The redshirt freshman has totaled nine touchdowns in his five games (three starts) for the Fighting Irish. Through the air, he is 66 of 99 for 862 yards and seven scores. He also has added 119 rushing yards and two touchdowns.
Marquee Matchup #2: No. 13 Northwestern (Clayton Thorson) at No. 18 Michigan (Jake Rudock)
Saturday, Oct. 10 at 2:30 p.m. (CT) on Big Ten Network
Redshirt freshman Clayton Thorson has led Northwestern to a perfect start through his first five collegiate games. He has gone 64-for-113 for 711 yards and four touchdowns, while also rushing for 165 yards and four scores. Thorson ranks tied for sixth among freshmen at any position in points responsible for (48).
In his first season after transferring from Iowa, senior Jake Rudock has helped steer Michigan (4-1) on its current four-game winning streak. For the year, he has completed better than 60 percent of his passes (89-of-148) for nearly 200 yards per game. Rudock has accounted for seven touchdowns (five passing, two rushing).
Marquee Matchup #3: No. 23 California (Jared Goff) at No. 5 Utah (Travis Wilson)
Saturday, Oct. 10 at 9 p.m. (CT) on ESPN
With a 390-yard, 4-touchdown performance, Jared Goff became Cal’s all-time passing touchdown leader last week (68). He ranks among the nation’s top 10 in passing touchdowns (T-3rd, 15), passing yards (7th, 1,630), passing efficiency (7th, 170.5), points responsible for (T-7th, 92) and completion percentage (8th, .702).
Utah’s Travis Wilson was a Davey O’Brien Award “Great 8” selection the last week of September after passing for 227 yards and four touchdowns while rushing for 100 yards and a score in a 63-20 win over No. 13 Oregon. The senior currently leads the nation in Total Quarterback Rating (QBR) at 93.8.