NEW ORLEANS -- Senior quarterback Nathan Rourke (Oakville, Ontario, Canada) of the Ohio football team has been named to the 2019 Manning Award Watch List presented by A.O. Smith, as announced today by the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award.
The list includes 30 of the top quarterbacks in the nation heading into the 2019 season. The winner will again be selected by a voting panel, which includes national media and each of the Mannings, after the bowls. The Manning Award was created by the Allstate Sugar Bowl in honor of the college football accomplishments of Archie, Peyton and Eli Manning. It is the only quarterback award that includes the candidates' bowl performances in its balloting.
Inclusion on the Watch List is not necessary for the quarterbacks to be selected for the honor. Midseason additions to the Watch List will be announced on Thursday, Oct. 17. The list of 10 finalists will be released on Thursday, Nov. 28. The winner will be announced in the week following the College Football Playoff National Championship.
This year's Watch List includes players from all 10 Football Bowl Subdivision conferences. The SEC leads the way with six selections, while the Pac-12 and the Big Ten each have four selections, followed by the ACC with three. There are 17 seniors on the list while the junior class is represented by 10 quarterbacks and the sophomore class has three.
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 has also been named to the Maxwell Award, Davey O'Brien Award, Walter Camp Player of the Year Award, College Football Performance Awards National Performer of the Year Trophy and Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award watch lists. Including Rourke's six selections, Ohio has placed players on 10 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.