Ivy Player Of The Year Quinn Epperly Named To 2014 Payton Award Watch List
Senior Quinn Epperly, the reigning Bushnell Cup recipient as the Ivy League Offensive Player of the Year, was named to the first Watch List for the 2014 Walter Payton Award, which honors the National Offensive Player of the Year in FCS Football.
The honor is presented by The Sports Network, which unveiled its 20-man Watch List Monday. Epperly placed 10th in the voting last year following his record-setting season leading Princeton to its 10th Ivy League championship.
Epperly, who was also named a Preseason Third-Team All-America by Beyond Sports Network, is coming off a historic junior season, when he threw for 25 touchdowns and rushed for 19 more while leading the Tigers to their first Ivy title since 2006. Epperly will be looking to lead Princeton to back-to-back Ivy League championships for the first time in 50 years, and he returns multiple All-Ivy starters on offense, including offensive lineman Spenser Huston, wideouts Seth DeValve and Connor Kelley, and running back Di Andre Atwater.
Epperly already ranks eighth all-time in total offense at Princeton (3,975 yards), and if he matches his total from last season, he would rank second only to Doug Butler. He ranks ninth at Princeton in career passing yards (2,876), and he would move to third on that list if he matched his 2013 total.
Epperly placed 10th in the national voting last year (48 points), including six second-place votes and 21 overall in the Top 5. He is one of six players on the 2014 Watch List to have placed in the Top 10 in the 2013 voting; the others are Eastern Washington junior Vernon Adams, who was the runner-up to winner Jimmy Garoppolo; Fordham senior Michael Nebrich (fifth); Southeastern Louisiana senior Bryan Bennett (eighth); and Villanova junior John Robertson (ninth).
Past winners of the Payton include Steve McNair, Tony Romo, Brian Westbrook, Brian Finneran and Garoppolo, this year's second-round draft choice of the New England Patriots.