Football players catch attention of college football awards committees

James Krause

DeKALB — Several NIU football players have grabbed the attention of college football awards committees.

Redshirt junior quarterback Marcus Childers was named to the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award Watch List. The award is handed to the best fourth-year quarterback in the nation.

The Golden Arm Award recipients include former Indianapolis Colts quarterback Andrew Luck and current Tennessee Titans quarterback Marcus Marriota.

Childers finished last season with 2,175 passing yards, including a career-high 300 yards in the Mid-American Conference championship game against the University of Buffalo. The Huskie has a total of 3,849 passing yards at NIU along with 31 passing touchdowns. Childers also has 1,004 career rushing yards and 11 touchdowns.

Redshirt senior linebacker Antonio Jones-Davis was named to both the Chuck Bednarik Award and Bronko Nagurski Award Watch Lists. Jones-Davis played all 14 games for NIU last season and tallied 130 total tackles including 14.5 tackles for loss and four sacks.

Jones-Davis was also named to the Watch List of the Resse’s Senior Bowl, taking place in January 2020 for players expected to enter the NFL Draft. Offensive lineman Max Scharping and defensive end Sutton Smith represented NIU last season at the event held in Mobile, Alabama.

Redshirt junior running back Tre Harbison was named to the Doak Walker Award Watch List, awarded to the best running back in the country.

Harbison rushed for 1,034 yards last season, scoring five rushing touchdowns. Harbison was the first 1,000 yard rusher for the Huskies since Joel Bouagnon in 2015.

Candidates for the Doak Walker Award include University of Wisconsin junior running back Jonothan Taylor, who took the award in 2018.