2006 Manning Award Winner - JaMarcus Russell
The Sugar Bowl Committee along with the Manning Family officially announced that Louisiana State University quarterback JaMarcus Russell has been selected as this year's recipient of the Manning Award.
The Manning Award, given to the nation's best quarterback, is the only quarterback award that takes into consideration the candidate's bowl performance. This year's finalists were: Russell, Erik Ainge (Tennessee), John David Booty (USC), Colt Brennan (Hawaii), Brian Brohm (Louisville), Chad Henne (Michigan), Chris Leak (Florida), Nate Longshore (California), Brady Quinn (Notre Dame), Troy Smith (Ohio State) and Patrick White (West Virginia).
"Once again we are pleased with the winner of the Manning Award," said Sugar Bowl Chief Executive Officer Paul Hoolahan. "JaMarcus Russell had a great season that fittingly was punctuated with an outstanding effort in the Allstate Sugar Bowl."
Russell finished his career ranked No. 2 in school history in passing touchdowns with 52 and completion percentage of 61.9%. He also ranks No. 3 in LSU history in completions (493), passing yards (6,625) and total offense (6,704) and he's fourth in attempts (797).
"We're very excited to have JaMarcus as this year's winner," said Archie Manning. "He has had a spectacular season and career at LSU, and capped it off with an explosive finish. We're proud that he will represent this award."
In addition to the Manning Award, Russell was also voted the Allstate Sugar Bowl MVP, First-Team All-SEC (AP, SEC Coaches), and was named LSU's Charles McClendon Most Valuable Player for the 2006 season. He was also the SEC Offensive Player of the Week three times and SEC Player of the Week twice.
The Manning Award was created in 2005 to honor the college football accomplishments of Archie, Peyton, and Eli Manning and is presented annually following the holiday bowl season. The winner is selected by a panel of national media covering college football, as well as each of the Manning's. Last year's winner was University of Texas quarterback Vince Young, and the inaugural winner was USC quarterback Matt Leinart.
An official presentation ceremony in Russell's honor will be held in the coming weeks.