Clemson’s Lawrence, USC’s Bentley on O’Brien watch list

Clemson’s Lawrence, USC’s Bentley on O’Brien watch list
Clemson's Trevor Lawrence warms up before the NCAA college football playoff championship game against Alabama Monday, Jan. 7, 2019, in Santa Clara, Calif. (AP Photo/Ben Margot) (Source: Ben Margot)

Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence and South Carolina’s Jake Bentley are 2 of 30 players named to the 2019 Davey O’Brien National Quarterback Award Watch List, announced today by the Davey O’Brien Foundation.

Compiled by a subset of the Davey O'Brien National Selection Committee, this year's list was selected based on player performance during the previous year and expectations heading into the 2019 college football season. All nominees are required to have previously started at least one game at their current institution.

Lawrence, a rising sophomore, is coming off a season that saw him throw for over 3200 yards and 30 touchdowns after taking over as the starter early in the season. He would help lead the Tigers to the National Championship and was the National Freshman of the Year.

A 6-4, 220-pounder from Opelika, Ala., Bentley owns a 19-13 career record as a starter, including a 10-7 mark in SEC games. He ranks second in South Carolina history in completion percentage (62.8), is third in pass completions (610) and passing touchdowns (54), fourth in passing yards (7,385), pass attempts (972) and touchdowns responsible for (62) and fifth in total offense (7,533) entering his senior season.

Fifteen seniors, nine juniors and six sophomores comprise the list. Among conferences, the SEC leads the way for the third straight season with a half-dozen selections. Other leagues with at least three members on the watch list are the Pac-12 (5), Big 12 (4) and Big Ten (3). Nearly half of the quarterbacks are products of either California (7) or Texas (6) high schools.

The Davey O'Brien National Quarterback Award is presented annually to the nation's best college quarterback and is the oldest and most prestigious national quarterback award. Appearing on the watch list is not a requirement for a player to win the award. Quarterbacks from all NCAA Division I Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) schools are eligible.

Sixteen semifinalists for the award will be named on Wednesday, Nov. 13. From that list, the Foundation will announce the three finalists on Monday, Nov. 25. The 2019 Davey O'Brien Award winner will be unveiled live on ESPN Thursday, Dec. 12, during The Home Depot College Football Awards.

The 2019 season marks the 13th year that fans will be invited to participate in the voting process on VoteOBrien.org.