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Dec. 5, 2015

COLUMBUS, Ohio – Ohio State junior running back Ezekiel Elliott is in the running for another major award as the Chicago Tribune revealed today that he is one of three finalists for the newspaper’s Silver Football, which is voted on by the Big Ten Conference head coaches and awarded annually to the conference’s best player.

Elliott, Iowa junior quarterback C.J. Beathard and Michigan State senior quarterback Connor Cook are the contenders for the Silver Football, an award older than the Heisman Trophy and that has been presented since 1924. The winner will be announced Friday, Dec. 11.

This latest honor extends what has truly been an incredible calendar year for Elliott, the two-time OSU Scholar-Athlete from St. Louis who is majoring in marketing. Looking back at a few dates …

  • Dec. 6, 2014 – One year ago almost to the moment – at the Big Ten championship game vs. Wisconsin – Elliott ripped off the first of five 200-yard rushing games during the next year with 220 yards and two touchdowns in the title-game win over Wisconsin.
  • Jan. 1, 2015 – Elliott welcomed the New Year in style, capturing Sugar Bowl offensive MVP honors with 230 yards, two touchdowns and a school-record 11.5-yards per carry average in the College Football Playoff semifinal win over No. 1 Alabama. Included was a game-clinching, 85-yard fourth quarter touchdown run.
  • Jan. 12, 2015 – A four-touchdown, 246-yard game by Elliott powered Ohio State to its eighth national championship with Elliott capturing MVP honors in the win over No. 2 Oregon.
  • April 19, 2015 – Elliott is named the 85th James E. Sullivan Award winner as the outstanding amateur athlete in America.
  • Sept. 6, 2015 – Elliott recorded two memorable plays in the Buckeyes’ season-opening win at Virginia Tech: bursting 80-yards for a touchdown – the first of his six 50-yard rushes this season – on his first carry of the year; and making two aggressive, physical blocks on Braxton Miller’s spectacular spin-move touchdown.
  • October 3, 2015 – A school-record 243-yards rushing in the second half, plus touchdown runs of 55-, 65- and 75-yards, carried the Buckeyes to a 34-27 win over Indiana and was part of a 274-yard rushing day for Elliott, second-most in school history.
  • Nov. 28, 2015 – Elliott wedged himself into second place in school history with 3,812 rushing yards and he tied Eddie George’s school record of five 200-yard rushing games with 214 yards in the win over Michigan.
  • Dec. 1, 2015 – Elliott is named the Big Ten Conference’s Graham-George offensive player of the year and the Ameche-Dayne running back of the year after a season in which he rushed for 1,672 yards, scored 19 touchdowns and caught 26 passes for an 11-1 team.

Elliott, who is No. 1 in the Big Ten in rushing, scoring and all-purpose yards, No. 4 nationally in rushing yards and tied for second in rushing TDs, could become Ohio State’s 18th Silver Football winner and its third in the last four years.

But first, here’s hoping his year gets even better in two days when the Heisman Trust selects its finalists for the Heisman Memorial Trophy.