Walter Payton Award

This article is about the college football award. For the professional football award, see Walter Payton Man of the Year Award. For the high school football award, see Walter Payton Trophy.
Walter Payton Award

Walter Payton Award
Awarded for "Most outstanding offensive player in the Division I Football Championship Subdivision"
Location U.S.
Country United States
Presented by STATS LLC
First awarded 1987
Currently held by Cooper Kupp, Eastern Washington
Official website

The Walter Payton Award is awarded annually to the most outstanding offensive player in the Division I Football Championship Subdivision (formerly Division I-AA) of college football as chosen by a nationwide panel of media and college sports information directors.[1] The honor was first given in 1987 to the outstanding player in the division, but in 1995, eligibility was restricted to offensive players, as the Buck Buchanan Award for defensive players was inaugurated.

The bust was named in honor of the late National Football League (NFL) legend Walter Payton, who starred at Jackson State University.[2]

Among the many schools in the division, only six schools have won it twice: Appalachian State, Colgate, Georgia Southern, Idaho, New Hampshire, and Eastern Illinois. Eastern Washington and Villanova are the only schools to have won it three times. In 2009, Armanti Edwards from Appalachian State became the first player to receive the award twice.[3]

Armanti Edwards is the only two-time winner of the award


Year Player School Position
1987 Gamble, KennyKenny Gamble Colgate Running back
1988 Meggett, DaveDave Meggett Towson State Running back
1989 Friesz, JohnJohn Friesz Idaho Quarterback
1990 Dean, WalterWalter Dean Grambling Running back
1991 Martin, JamieJamie Martin Weber State Quarterback
1992 Payton, MichaelMichael Payton Marshall Quarterback
1993 Nussmeier, DougDoug Nussmeier Idaho Quarterback
1994 McNair, SteveSteve McNair Alcorn State Quarterback
1995 Dickenson, DaveDave Dickenson Montana Quarterback
1996 Amerson, ArchieArchie Amerson Northern Arizona Running back
1997 Finneran, BrianBrian Finneran Villanova Wide receiver
1998 Azumah, JerryJerry Azumah New Hampshire Running back
1999 Peterson, AdrianAdrian Peterson Georgia Southern Running back
2000 Ivory, LouisLouis Ivory Furman Running back
2001 Westbrook, BrianBrian Westbrook Villanova Running back
2002 Romo, TonyTony Romo Eastern Illinois Quarterback
2003 Branch, JamaalJamaal Branch Colgate Running back
2004 Campbell, LangLang Campbell William & Mary Quarterback
2005 Meyer, ErikErik Meyer Eastern Washington Quarterback
2006 Santos, RickyRicky Santos New Hampshire Quarterback
2007 Foster, JaysonJayson Foster Georgia Southern Quarterback
2008 Edwards, ArmantiArmanti Edwards Appalachian State Quarterback
2009 Edwards, ArmantiArmanti Edwards (2) Appalachian State Quarterback
2010 Moses, JeremyJeremy Moses Stephen F. Austin Quarterback
2011 Mitchell, Bo LeviBo Levi Mitchell Eastern Washington Quarterback
2012 Heinicke, TaylorTaylor Heinicke Old Dominion Quarterback
2013 Garoppolo, JimmyJimmy Garoppolo Eastern Illinois Quarterback
2014 Robertson, JohnJohn Robertson Villanova Quarterback
2015 Kupp, CooperCooper Kupp Eastern Washington Wide receiver

Past finalists

Awards won by school

Awards won by school
School Winners
Eastern Washington 3
Villanova 3
Colgate 2
Eastern Illinois 2
New Hampshire 2
Appalachian State† 2
Georgia Southern† 2
Idaho† 2
Alcorn State 1
Furman 1
Grambling State 1
Montana 1
Northern Arizona 1
Stephen F. Austin 1
Towson 1
Weber State 1
William & Mary 1
Marshall† 1
Old Dominion† 1

†No longer a member of FCS


  1. "Walter Payton Award". The Sports Network. Retrieved 2008-12-22.
  2. Roy Taylor (2002). "Walter Payton Biography". Bears History. Retrieved 2008-12-22.
  3. "Armanti Edwards wins 2009 Walter Payton Award". The Sports Network. Retrieved 2008-12-17.
  4. Erik Meyer wins 2005 Walter Payton Award Sports Network
  5. Ricky Santos wins the 2006 Walter Payton Award Sports Network
  6. Sweet: Foster wins Walter Payton Award Savannah Now, December 13, 2007
  7. Donaldson third in Payton Award voting McDonough Voice, December 19, 2008
  8. Edwards a Payton Award finalist Watauga Democrat, November 30, 2009
  9. Presley Invited to Payton Ceremony, December 1, 2010
  11. "Old Dominion's Heinicke captures 2012 Walter Payton Award". The Sports Network. December 17, 2012. Retrieved December 18, 2012.

External links

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