Last night it was an Alabama defensive player taking home an individual honor. This afternoon, a Tide player on the other side of the ball has been honored as well.
AJ McCarron, it was announced Monday, has been named as the 2013 winner of the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award. McCarron joins Jay Barker as the only Tide quarterbacks to win an award that’s been presented annually since 1987.
McCarron was one of five finalists for this year’s award, along with Clemson’s Tajh Boyd, Fresno State’s Derek Carr, Northern Illinois’ Jordan Lynch and Georgia’s Aaron Murray.
“It is an unbelievable honor to win the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award.” the quarterback said in a statement. “I can’t thank the Unitas family enough for selecting me as the 2013 winner. To have my name next to all of the great quarterbacks who have won this award in the past is truly an honor. I want to thank my teammates, Coach Saban and all of our assistant coaches for making this possible.”
In McCarron’s three years as a starter, the Tide has gone 36-3 and won a pair of BCS championships. He’s eighth in the country in passing efficiency this season after finishing No. 1 in 2012, and has thrown just 15 interceptions — and 75 touchdowns — 996 career attempts.
The 2012 winner of the award, given to seniors or fourth-year juniors on schedule to graduate with their class, was Kansas State’s Collin Klein.