LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. — Oregon quarterback Marcus Mariota won the Maxwell Award, given to the nation’s outstanding player.
Mariota was presented with the prize Thursday night during the College Football Awards Show at Disney. It was his third major award of the night. Earlier in the evening, he received the Davey O’Brien National Quarterback Award. He was also selected as the Walter Camp player of the year.
On Saturday, Mariota hopes to become the first player to win the Maxwell Award and the Heisman Trophy in the same season since Auburn quarterback Cam Newton in 2010.
Mariota was chosen over Maxwell finalists Melvin Gordon of Wisconsin and Dak Prescott of Mississippi State.
GORDON TAKES DOAK WALKER: Wisconsin’s Melvin Gordon won the Doak Walker Award, given to the nation’s top running back.
The junior is the third Badger to win the award, joining 1999 winner Ron Dayne and 2012 winner Montee Ball. Gordon is the seventh player from the Big Ten to claim the honor.
Thursday’s other award announcements:
Fred Biletnikoff Award (outstanding receiver): Amari Cooper, Alabama
Chuck Bedarnik Trophy (best defensive player): Scooby Wright III, Arizona
Outland Trophy (outstanding interior lineman): Brandon Scherff, Iowa
Jim Thorpe Award (best defensive back): Gerod Holliman, Louisville
Lou Groza Award (outstanding kicker): Brad Craddock, Maryland
Ray Guy Award (best punter): Tom Hackett, Utah
Coach of the Year: Gary Patterson, TCU
ULM OFFICIALS OFFER REASSURANCES: Officials at Louisiana-Monroe are taking steps to assure the public that the university is committed to football.
ULM President Nick Bruno and Athletic Director Brian Wickstrom issued a statement saying the program is growing and will remain part of the university’s future. The statement said Wickstrom and his staff have raised over $5.5 million over the past eight months for projects and facilities upgrades.
The statement came after a Dec. 2 announcement that UAB was dropping football.
BAYLOR COORDINATOR HEADS TO TULSA: Tulsa hired Baylor offensive coordinator Philip Montgomery as coach.
Montgomery has been calling plays for one of the most prolific offenses in college football for the past four seasons. Baylor is the only team in the Football Bowl Subdivision to be ranked in the top two in total offense and top four in the scoring offense each of the past four seasons.
Montgomery, a 42-year-old Texan, has spent most of his career as an assistant to Baylor coach Art Briles, first at Stephenville (Texas) High School and then at Houston (2003-07) and Baylor.
Around the nation
Tony Sanchez, the head coach at Bishop Gorman High School in Las Vegas who had won six consecutive state championships, will be the new coach at UNLV. He replaces Bobby Hauck, who resigned after going 2-11 this season. ... Barry Alvarez is returning to the sideline to coach the Badgers for the second time in Wisconsin’s last three bowl games. He’ll fill in for Gary Andersen, who left for Oregon State on Wednesday. ... North Carolina associate head coach for defense Vic Koenning won’t return next season, a person familiar with the situation said.