Aug. 3, 2009
HOUSTON - The Davey O'Brien Foundation today named University of Houston junior quarterback Case Keenum to its preseason watch list for the 2009 Davey O'Brien National Quarterback Award. The award is presented annually to the nation's best college quarterback, and the 2009 watch list is made up of 33 candidates representing 11 conferences.
Keenum was the 2008 C-USA Offensive Player of the Year and was selected to repeat that honor in 2009, according to the league's head coaches. He led Houston to 10 wins and a victory in the Bell Helicopter Armed Forces Bowl last season, the school's fourth straight bowl game and its first postseason win since 1981.
Keenum passed for more than 300 yards in all but one game of the season, leading the nation in total offense (5,241 yards), while ranking second in passing yards (5,020) and third in passing touchdowns (44). The 2007 C-USA Freshman of the Year completed better than 67 percent of his passes (397-of-589) and averaged 403.2 yards per game. With Keenum at the controls, the Cougars ranked second in the FBS in total offense at 569.9 yards per game, while averaging 40.6 points per game.
Watch List candidates were selected by a subset of The O'Brien Selection Committee. The list focuses on a select group of quarterbacks who have demonstrated what members of the Selection Committee have recognized as tremendous preseason talent. The award focuses on accomplishments both on and off the field.
The O'Brien will follow performances of all FBS quarterbacks until Semifinalists are selected in late October. Semifinalists will be announced October 26; Finalists November 23; and the Winner December 10. During all rounds of voting, The O'Brien Selection Committee is asked to evaluate each candidate on the criteria of quarterback skills and athletic ability, academics, reputation as a team player, character, leadership and sportsmanship.
This marked the first time in the award's history the Watch List was announced on ESPN's College Football Live. The 2009 O'Brien Winner will be announced during The Home Depot College Football Awards Show airing on ESPN December 10. The recipient will be honored February 15, 2010 at the 33rd Annual O'Brien Awards Dinner at The Fort Worth Club in Fort Worth, Texas.