COLUMBUS, Ohio – A pair of Ohio State Buckeyes – QB C.J. Stroud and K Noah Ruggles – are finalists for national awards. Stroud is up for the Davey O’Brien Award as the nation’s top quarterback while Ruggles is a finalist for the Lou Groza Award, which is presented annually to college football’s top place kicker.
Stroud guides an offense that is No. 1 nationally in scoring (47.2 points per game) and yardage (559.9 yards per game). He’s No. 2 nationally – and No. 1 among Power 5 players – in QB rating (186.7), No. 4 in touchdown passes (36), No. 6 in yards per game (346.8), No. 4 in yards per attempt (10.0) and No. 8 in completion percentage (71.1).
A seven-time Big Ten Freshman of the Week, Stroud’s total of 3,468 yards passing is already the second-highest in single-season history. Last Saturday, he established a career high with six touchdown passes – all in the first half – while completing 32 of 35 passes for 432 yards against than-No. 7 Michigan State.
Stroud joins Alabama’s Bryce Young and Pittsburgh’s Kenny Pickett as finalists. The winner will be announced live on ESPN at the Home Depot College Football Awards on Thursday, December 9th. The Davey O’Brien Fan Vote is now open for winner voting and will close at 7 p.m. (CT) on Tuesday, Nov. 30. To participate in the Fan Vote, fans must like the original Davey O’Brien Award social media post highlighting their favorite quarterback.
Ruggles, who is in his first season with the Buckeyes and graduating and transferring from the University of North Carolina, is the nation’s top-scoring kicker with 113 points. He’s made 16 of 17 field goals and all 65 of his extra points. He made four field goals in back-to-back wins over Penn State and Nebraska, becoming the first kicker in program history to do so. His season-long field goal of 46 yards gave Ohio State a two-score lead in a 26-17 win at Nebraska on Nov. 6.
The other two finalists for the award are Gabe Brkic of Oklahoma and Jake Moody of Michigan. Fans can visit lougrozaaward.com and cast a vote for their favorite of the three finalists selected by the national panel of voters. The winner will be announced live on ESPN at the Home Depot College Football Awards on Thursday, December 9th.
Offensive Line a Semifinalist for the Joe Moore Award
Ohio State’s offensive line – which features starters Paris Johnson Jr., Thayer Munford, Luke Wypler, Nicholas Petit-Frere and Dawand Jones along with Matt Jones, a key and versatile reserve – is one of 13 semifinalists for the Joe Moore Award.
Behind that line, Ohio State is 31st nationally in rushing, No. 6 in passing and No. 1 in total offense. It’s allowed by 39.0 tackles for loss – sixth-best in the country – and 13.0 sacks, which is 13th best.