College Football

more stats

EWU's Bo Levi Mitchell captures 2011 Walter Payton Award

Eastern Washington's quarterback honored as the most outstanding player in FCS college football

Bo Levi Mitchell is the 25th winner of the Walter Payton Award.

Frisco, TX (Sports Network) - As the injuries mounted for the Eastern Washington football team this season, Bo Levi Mitchell's production increased when most quarterbacks would have endured a decline.

Mitchell was all too happy to put the Eagles on his throwing shoulder and carry them.

Friday night, the senior was honored for his record-setting season with the 2011 Walter Payton Award, which goes to the outstanding player in the Football Championship Subdivision. The 25th annual award, the most prestigious in the division, is presented by The Sports Network and sponsored by Fathead.com.

Mitchell, who one year ago was named the most outstanding performer when Eastern Washington won the FCS championship game in Frisco, collected 57 first-place votes and 453 points from a national panel of 132 sports information and media relations directors, broadcasters, writers and other dignitaries. Lehigh quarterback Chris Lum and Indiana State running back Shakir Bell, who also were on hand at the FCS awards presentation, tied for second in the voting with 219 points each.

"He worked at (development) and we saw the growth - he worked hard to develop his skills and was tireless at studying video in order to better understand and operate our offense," EWU head coach Beau Baldwin said of Mitchell, who transferred to the Big Sky Conference school from SMU following his sophomore year. "It culminated with his production this season and the way our team ended the year with six wins in our last seven games. I couldn't be more proud of what he accomplished here."

The 6-foot-2, 210-pound Mitchell led the nation in passing yards (4,009) and touchdown passes (33) during the regular season. As Eastern Washington's offense suffered seven key injuries (including five that were season-ending), the Big Sky's offensive player of the year averaged 364.5 passing yards per game, which ranks ninth in FCS history. He completed 318-of-503 attempts (63.2 percent), with 13 interceptions. The Eagles finished with a 6-5 record.

"I'm blessed with more receivers around me that are so good," said Mitchell, who is the first-team quarterback on The Sports Network/Fathead.com FCS All-America Team.

Mitchell, from Katy, Texas, is the second player from Eastern Washington to win the Payton Award - quarterback Erik Meyer won in 2005 - and the sixth winner from the Big Sky.

Lum, a 6-2, 205-pound senior, led Lehigh to a second straight unbeaten season in Patriot League play and was named the league's offensive player of the year. As the Mountain Hawks finished 10-1 in the regular season, Lum ranked third in the FCS in passing yards per game (348.6) and second in touchdown passes (31). He completed 297-of-443 attempts (67 percent) for 3,739 yards, with 15 interceptions.

Bell, a 5-foot-7, 185-pound sophomore, was the FCS rushing leader (1,670 yards, 151.8 per game) during the regular season. Named the Missouri Valley Football Conference Offensive Player of the Year, he scored 14 touchdowns and averaged 7.3 yards per carry. The Sycamores posted their second straight winning season with a 6-5 record.

In addition to Mitchell winning the Payton Award at the national awards presentation, New Hampshire junior linebacker Matt Evans captured the Buck Buchanan Award, which is given to the FCS' outstanding defensive player; Towson running back Terrance West won the inaugural Jerry Rice Award for FCS freshman of the year; and Towson's Rob Ambrose won the Eddie Robinson Award, which honors the FCS' coach of the year. The Sports Network presents and Fathead.com also sponsors those three awards.


2011 Walter Payton Award Voting
Name School 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th Total
Bo Levi MitchellEastern Washington 57 28 11 8 7 453
Chris LumLehigh 16 13 17 12 12 219
Shakir BellIndiana State 10 20 12 18 17 219
Jonathan GrimesWm. & Mary 10 16 9 18 8 185
Aaron MelletteElon 2 5 17 21 21 144
Terrance WestTowson 5 11 11 5 8 120
Tim FlandersSam Houston St. 10 7 5 6 7 112
Kevin DeckerNew Hampshire 5 4 9 9 9 95
Jordan BrownBryant 2 8 11 7 5 94
Casey TherriaultJackson State 3 7 8 7 5 86
Casey BrockmanMurray State 3 5 7 5 7 73
Tirrell RennieNorthern Iowa 3 3 2 1 4 39
DeNarius McGheeMontana State 3 0 2 3 8 35
Eric BreitensteinWofford 2 2 3 1 1 30
Brian QuickAppalachian State 0 2 5 1 2 27
Andrew PierceDelaware 1 0 1 1 3 13
Mike BrownLiberty 0 0 1 3 1 10
Brad SorensenSouthern Utah 0 0 0 3 2 8
Jamaine CookYoungstown State 0 1 0 0 2 6
Rodrick RumbleIdaho State 0 0 0 2 2 6
*Matt DenhamE. Kentucky 0 0 1 1 0 5
*Tre GrayRichmond 0 0 0 0 1 1
* -Write-in votes.

Other Stories

  • PGA: RBC Heritage

    Today at 3:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • PGA: RBC Heritage

    Tomorrow at 3:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • PGA: Zurich Classic of New Orleans

    Saturday at 3:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • MLB: Atlanta Braves at NY Mets

    Tonight at 7:05 on 99.9 The Fan

  • MLB: Baltimore Orioles at Boston Red Sox

    Tomorrow at 7:05 pm on 99.9 The Fan

Scoreboard
Local
Final
NOR 0
DUR 3
 
7:05pm Tonight
NOR
DUR
 
Final
CHC 1
CIN 4
Final
PIT 3
MIL 5
Final
WAS 3
STL 1
Final
CLE 2
TOR 3
Final
DET 6
ANA 11
Final
NYM 0
ATL 6
Final
BOS 4
BAL 8
Final
TAM 11
NYY 5
Final
MIA 8
SEA 4
Final
TEX 12
CWS 0
Final
KAN 5
MIN 0
Final
COL 12
PHI 1
Final
OAK 11
HOU 3
Final
LOS 2
ARI 4
Final
SDP 2
SFG 1
1:05pm Today
WAS
STL
 
1:05pm Today
CLE
TOR
 
1:08pm Today
DET
ANA
 
1:35pm Today
BOS
BAL
 
2:10pm Today
KAN
MIN
 
2:20pm Today
CHC
CIN
 
4:05pm Today
OAK
HOU
 
7:05pm Tonight
PIT
MIL
 
7:10pm Tonight
NYM
ATL
 
7:10pm Tonight
TAM
NYY
 
7:10pm Tonight
MIA
SEA
 
8:05pm Tonight
TEX
CWS
 
8:10pm Tonight
LOS
ARI
 
8:10pm Tonight
COL
PHI
 
8:40pm Tonight
SDP
SFG
 
12:30pm Today
TOR
BRK
3:30pm Today
LAC
GSW
7:00pm Tonight
IND
ATL
9:30pm Tonight
OKC
MEM
Final
TAM 1
MON 4
Final
BOS 0
DET 1
Final
ANA 3
DAL 2
3:00pm Today
STL
CHI
7:00pm Tonight
PIT
CLB
9:30pm Tonight
COL
MIN
Final
NOR 0
DUR 3
 
7:05pm Tonight
NOR
DUR