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Jayden Daniels, the dazzling quarterback for LSU, is the AP college football player of the year

by Andrew Wright
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College Football Player of the Year

Jayden Daniels, the standout quarterback representing LSU, has been named the AP college football player of the year, marking a significant achievement for the school as its second winner in the past five seasons.

With an impressive tally of 35 out of 51 first-place votes and a total of 130 points from AP Top 25 poll voters, Daniels secured a comfortable lead. He emerged ahead of Washington quarterback Michael Penix, who claimed second place with 15 first-place votes and 97 points. Oregon’s QB Bo Nix secured the third position, followed by Ohio State receiver Marvin Harrison in fourth and Oklahoma State running back Ollie Gordon II in fifth. Notably, Nix received the sole remaining first-place vote. Surprisingly, USC quarterback Caleb Williams, the 2022 AP Player of the Year and the previous year’s Heisman winner, did not receive any votes in this season’s selection.

The finalists for the prestigious Heisman Trophy, including Daniels, Penix, Nix, and Harrison, are now eagerly awaiting the award presentation in New York, scheduled for Saturday. It’s worth noting that in the past two decades, the recipient of the AP award has diverged from the Heisman winner on only two occasions.

The last time an LSU player claimed the title of AP Player of the Year was in 2019 when Joe Burrow achieved the remarkable feat, simultaneously winning the Heisman as well.

Jayden Daniels, hailing from San Bernardino, California, made a significant impact after transferring to LSU from Arizona State in 2022. This season, he led the nation in total offense, accumulating an impressive 4,946 yards over 12 games, averaging 412.2 yards per game. His passing yardage of 3,812 ranks third nationally, and he shares the top spot in passing touchdowns (40) with Nix, who has played one additional game compared to Daniels.

Standing at 6 feet 4 inches and weighing 210 pounds, Daniels also demonstrated his prowess as a rusher, amassing 1,134 yards and 10 rushing touchdowns. Combining his rushing and passing touchdowns, along with a 2-point conversion via a passing play, Daniels is responsible for a remarkable 302 points, the highest in the nation.

While Daniels excels as a passer, it is his elusiveness and breakaway speed as a scrambler that set him apart. During a memorable 52-35 victory over Florida, he became the first Football Bowl Subdivision QB to achieve over 350 passing yards and over 200 rushing yards in a single game. LSU coach Brian Kelly praised his ability to read the game and run when necessary, highlighting his speed, durability, and toughness as exceptional qualities that place him among the greats.

Daniels’ approach to scrambling is instinctive, as he relies on reading the defense and reacting without premeditation. However, this style of play comes with its share of risks and underscores his toughness.

A significant hit during a game against Missouri briefly forced Daniels out of play due to a deep rib bruise. Nonetheless, he returned to lead LSU to a comeback victory, including a 35-yard scoring run. Despite the lingering rib injury in subsequent games, Daniels displayed his high pain tolerance and determination.

Unfortunately, LSU’s bid for an SEC title was dashed when they lost to Alabama, a game where Daniels spent much of the fourth quarter sidelined due to concussion symptoms resulting from a penalized hit by linebacker Dallas Turner. Up until that point, Daniels had been a formidable force that challenged Alabama’s defense.

Reflecting on his achievements, Jayden Daniels emphasized the crucial role played by his teammates, from the offensive line to the running backs and pass-catchers, in any individual accolades he receives. He acknowledges their contributions and stresses the importance of making them feel integral to his success.

As this college football season unfolds, stay updated with poll alerts and the latest developments in AP Top 25 football by visiting the official AP college football website: https://bigbignews.net/college-football.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about College Football Player of the Year

Who won the AP College Football Player of the Year?

Jayden Daniels, the LSU quarterback, was named the AP College Football Player of the Year.

How did Jayden Daniels perform in the AP Player of the Year selection?

Jayden Daniels secured 35 out of 51 first-place votes and a total of 130 points from AP Top 25 poll voters, comfortably winning the award.

Who were the other finalists for the Heisman Trophy?

The finalists for the Heisman Trophy included Jayden Daniels, Michael Penix, Bo Nix, and Marvin Harrison.

How did Jayden Daniels perform in the 2022 college football season?

Jayden Daniels led the nation in total offense with 4,946 yards in 12 games, averaging 412.2 yards per game. He passed for 3,812 yards and shared the top spot in passing touchdowns with 40.

What makes Jayden Daniels stand out as a quarterback?

Jayden Daniels is known for his elusiveness and breakaway speed as a scrambler, setting him apart from others. He became the first FBS quarterback to pass for over 350 yards and rush for over 200 yards in a single game.

Did Jayden Daniels face any challenges during the season?

Yes, he faced challenges, including injuries like a deep rib bruise and concussion symptoms. However, his determination and high pain tolerance allowed him to overcome these obstacles.

How does Jayden Daniels credit his success?

Jayden Daniels emphasizes the importance of his teammates, including the offensive line, running backs, and pass-catchers, in his individual accolades, making them feel integral to his success.

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