NEW HAVEN, Conn. -- Senior quarterback Nathan Rourke (Oakville, Ontario, Canada) of the Ohio football team has been named to the 2019 Walter Camp Player of the Year Award Preseason Watch List, as announced today by the Walter Camp Foundation.
The Walter Camp Player of the Year Award is presented annually to the nation's most outstanding player. The award is named for Walter Camp, "The Father of American Football" who played at Yale from 1877-82 and is credited with creating many strategy features which led to the development of the organized game.
Rourke is one of 40 players in the country to be named to the 2019 Walter Camp Player of the Year Award Preseason Watch List and is the lone representative from the Mid-American Conference.
The watch list will be narrowed to 10 semi-finalists in mid-November. The 2019 Walter Camp Player of the Year recipient, which is voted on by the 130 NCAA Bowl Subdivision head coaches and sports information directors, will be announced live on ESPN on Thursday, Dec. 12. The winner will then receive his trophy at the Foundation's 53rd annual national awards banquet on Jan. 18, 2020, in New Haven, Conn.
Rourke, a two-time All-MAC Second Team selection, has played in 26 games with 24 starts over the last two seasons with the Bobcats and owns a 17-7 record as a starting quarterback. Rourke is ranked first in program history with a career passing efficiency rating of 144.3, second with 40 career passing touchdowns, second with 178.3 career passing yards per game, fourth with 4,637 career passing yards, fourth with a career completion percentage of 57.4 percent (325-of-566), fifth with 14.3 career yards per completion and seventh with 325 career completions. He has also tallied 36 career rushing touchdowns, which ranks as the third-most in program history, and has rushed for more touchdowns than any other quarterback in NCAA FBS over the last two seasons. Rourke has been responsible for 77 career touchdowns -- the second-most in program history and the third-most in NCAA FBS over the last two seasons. He ranks third in program history with 37 career touchdowns scored and sixth with 222 career points scored. Rourke is a two-time winner of the Joe Cornish Trophy, which is awarded annually to the most outstanding Canadian player in NCAA Football. He has helped guide Ohio to a pair of bowl victories, with the Bobcats topping UAB, 41-6, in the 2017 Bahamas Bowl and shutting out San Diego State, 27-0, in the 2018 DXL Frisco Bowl.
A physical activity & sport coaching major, Rourke has also excelled in the classroom, earning both Academic All-MAC and MAC Distinguished Scholar Athlete recognition following his 2018 junior season.
Rourke arrived at Ohio after playing one year at Fort Scott Community College (Fort Scott, Kansas) in 2016. He played his senior year of high school at Edgewood Academy in Elmore, Ala., after playing his first three years of high school football at Holy Trinity High School in Oakville, Ontario, Canada.
Rourke's selection to the 2019 Walter Camp Player of the Year Award Preseason Watch List marks the first of his career. Last week, he was named to both the Maxwell Award and Davey O'Brien Award Watch Lists. Including Rourke's three selections, Ohio has placed players on seven award watch lists heading into the 2019 season. Redshirt senior center Steven Hayes (Dacula, Ga.) was named to the Rimington Trophy Watch List, redshirt senior safety Javon Hagan (Jacksonville, Fla.) and junior cornerback Jamal Hudson (Miami, Fla.) were named to the Jim Thorpe Award Watch List, Hagan was named to the Bronko Nagurski Trophy Watch List and redshirt senior kicker Louie Zervos (Tarpon Springs, Fla.) was named to the Lou Groza Collegiate Place-Kicker Award Preseason Watch List.
Ohio will kick off the 2019 regular season on Saturday, Aug. 31, with a home matchup against Rhode Island at Peden Stadium. The contest is slated to get underway at 2 p.m. ET and will be broadcast live on ESPN+. For ticket information, call the ticket office at 1-800-575-2287 or click here.