July 8, 2013
2013 Maxwell Award Watch List
EVANSTON, Ill. -- Northwestern senior running back and return specialist Venric Mark was named Monday to the preseason watch list for the 2013 Maxwell Award, presented annually since 1937 to the Player of the Year in college football.
Named a preseason All-American by Athlon Sports at both running back and on special teams, Mark is coming off a breakout junior season in which he was a consensus second-team All-Big Ten selection at running back after rushing for 1,366 yards, the sixth-best single-season total in school history. He scored 12 touchdowns out of the backfield and was named a semifinalist for the prestigious Doak Walker Award as well as Northwestern's Offensive MVP for the 2012 season.
An explosive return man, Mark averaged 18.7 yards per punt return with two runbacks for touchdowns en route to earning first-team All-American honors as a punt returner by the Football Writers Association of America. He finished just 29 yards shy of the Northwestern school record for all-purpose yards in a single season (2,166), ranking No. 1 in the Big Ten with 166.6 yards per game.
Semifinalists for the Maxwell Award will be announced Oct. 29, with three finalists being unveiled on Nov. 18. The winner will be announced as part of the Home Depot ESPNU College Football Awards Show on Dec. 7.
The Maxwell Award is part of the National College Football Awards Association (NCFAA), which encompasses the most prestigious awards in college football. The members of the NCFAA are unveiling their preseason watch lists over a 12-period in the month of July:
Mon., July 8: Bednarik Award / Maxwell Award
Tue., July 9: Mackey Award / Rimington Trophy
Wed., July 10: Lou Groza Award / Ray Guy Award
Thu., July 11: Bronko Nagurski Trophy / Outland Trophy
Fri., July 12: Jim Thorpe Award
Mon., July 15: Butkus Award / Rotary Lombardi Award
Tue., July 16: Biletnikoff Award
Wed., July 17: Davey O'Brien Award
Thu., July 18: Doak Walker Award
Fri., July 19: Walter Camp Award
Coming off a 10-win season last fall, Northwestern opens the 2013 campaign on Saturday, Aug. 31 at California and makes its debut at Ryan Field when it hosts Syracuse on Saturday, Sept. 7.
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