Clark Named a Semifinalist for Davey O'Brien Award
Oct. 27, 2008
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa.; - Penn State junior Daryll Clark (Youngstown, Ohio) has been selected one of 13 semifinalists for the Davey O'Brien National Quarterback Award. Clark has led the Nittany Lions to a 9-0 overall record, including a Big Ten-leading 5-0 conference mark, and a No. 3 ranking in the Bowl Championship Series standings and polls.
Clark was the only quarterback from a Big Ten school to be selected an O'Brien Award semifinalist.
Semifinalists were chosen by The O'Brien Selection Committee, comprised of journalists, broadcasters, commentators, and former winners, as well as fans across the country with the top three quarterbacks from The O'Brien Fan Vote being added to the list. The selection committee is asked to evaluate each candidate on his quarterback skills, athletic ability, academics, character leadership, sportsmanship, and reputation as a team player.
The 13 semifinalists will contend for the award until the list is narrowed to three finalists on Nov. 24. The O'Brien Award winner will be announced during The Home Depot ESPNU College Football Awards Show on Dec. 11 in Orlando, Fla. The recipient will be honored on Feb. 16, 2009 at the 32nd Annual O'Brien Awards Dinner at The Fort Worth Club in Fort Worth, Texas.
Fans are able to vote for semifinalist candidates once daily at www.VoteOBrien.org. The voting will continue through the semifinalist and finalist rounds with five percent of the final tally coming directly from the fan vote.
Penn State boasts two past recipients of the prestigious Davey O'Brien Award - Todd Blackledge (1982) and Kerry Collins (1994). Michael Robinson was Penn State's last semifinalist in 2005.
In his first season as a starter, Clark has flourished as the leader of one of the nation's most potent and productive offenses. He has accounted for a combined 19 touchdowns and 1,881 total yards through the season's first nine games. An accurate passer with a strong arm, the former Ursuline High School standout is 126 of 200 (63.0) for 1,652 yards, with 11 touchdowns with only two interceptions.
Clark ranks second in the Big Ten and 21st nationally in passing efficiency with a 148.4 rating. A gifted and fearless runner, he also has amassed 229 yards on the ground (4.2 avg.) and eight rushing touchdowns.
In Penn State's 48-7 win at Wisconsin on Oct. 11, Clark passed for a career-high 244 yards, completing 16 of 25 passes for one touchdown and one interception. He also notched his first multiple rushing touchdown game of his career, scoring on runs of two and four yards. For his standout performance, Clark was honored as Big Ten Offensive Player of the Week.
Clark helms a Penn State offensive attack that leads the Big Ten in three of the four primary categories and ranks in the top 15 nationally in total (12th, 459.8 ypg), scoring (8th, 41.8 ppg) and rushing offense (11th, 226.3 ypg). The Nittany Lions have scored 45 or more points in six of their nine victories this season. Penn State is No. 3 in the Big Ten in passing offense (233.4 ypg) and tied for No. 4 nationally in Red Zone success, converting 93.6 percent of its 47 opportunities (33 touchdowns, 11 field goals).
The other semifinalists for the 2008 O'Brien Award are: Sam Bradford, Oklahoma; Chase Daniel, Missouri; Max Hall, BYU; Graham Harrell, Texas Tech; David Johnson, Tulsa; Colt McCoy, Texas; Todd Reesing, Kansas; Zac Robinson, Oklahoma State; Mark Sanchez, USC; Matthew Stafford, Georgia; Tim Tebow, Florida; John Parker Wilson, Alabama,
Coach Joe Paterno's Nittany Lions are idle this week but will be back in action on Nov. 8 at Iowa. Kickoff is scheduled for 3:30 p.m. ET; 2:30 p.m. CT in Iowa City. The game will be an ABC regional telecast, with ESPN airing outside the ABC coverage area.