CLEMSON, S.C. — Deshaun Watson was the recipient of the 2016 Davey O’Brien Award, becoming the first player to win the top quarterback honor in consecutive years since Oklahoma’s Jason White in 2003,04. Watson was announced as the winner among finalists Lamar Jackson of Louisville and Baker Mayfield of Oklahoma at Thursday’s College Football Awards show in Atlanta.
Saturday night, Watson will be in New York as one of five finalists for the Heisman Trophy. A year ago, he finished third in the balloting. This year, Louisville quarterback Lamar Jackson is favored to take the honor that goes to college football’s top player.
Watson is the fourth quarterback to win the award multiple times, joining White, BYU’s Ty Detmer (1990,91) and Florida’s Danny Wuerffel (1995,96). The honor has been presented annually to the nation’s top quarterback since 1981.
The junior signal-caller, who was named a Walter Camp Second-Team All-American on Thursday as well, has put together another record-setting season. In Clemson’s 42-35 win over Virginia Tech that clinched a second straight ACC title and berth in the College Football Playoff, Watson accounted for five touchdowns. With three touchdown passes, he broke the Clemson record with 37 on the season. He has accounted for 43 in all, to go along with 4,440 yards of total offense.
Watson is a finalist several more national awards, including the Heisman Trophy, which will be presented in New York City on Saturday. He will join four other finalists after travelling to Baltimore, Md., on Friday to accept the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award.