Per a release from the CAA, Villanova Wildcats sophomore quarterback John Robertson has been named to the Walter Payton Award watch list. The award is given annually to the country's most outstanding offensive player at the in the Football Championship Subdivision.
Robertson is having a season for the ages for Villanova, and his play is not at all reflective of the 'Cats' 4-4 record to date. Currently, Robertson has passed for 1,307 yards (71.3%) with 8 touchdowns and 4 interceptions. More impressive are Robertson's rushing totals - he leads Villanova with 1,063 yards (6.8 ypc) and 15 touchdowns.
Those numbers have Robertson leading all quarterbacks in touchdowns, second in the country in completion percentage, and sixth in rushing yards.
His performance this season has him closing in on the school record of 1,603 yards set by Brian Westbrook, set in 2001 -- the season in which Westbrook won his Payton Award. Robertson is just 540 yards shy of that record. He would need to average 180 yards on the ground in each of the last three games of the season. Robertson is averaging 132.9 yards per game on the ground this season, but he eclipsed 200 yards in each of the last two games to set a first for Villanova.
Even if Robertson fails to reach Westbrook's single-season record, he has a chance to break a few school records before he graduates. He is currently in seventh place for career touchdowns at Villanova with 29, and the only Villanova player other than Westbrook to have more than one 1,000-yard rushing season (Westbrook had three). The quarterback is also tied with Kevin Monangai for third for most 100-yard rushing games, seventh for career passing yards, seventh for career total-offense, second for career rushing touchdowns, and ninth for career rushing yards (and on-pace to challenge Westbrook for number-1 after four years).
On the back of four straight 100-yard rushing performances, Robertson will attempt to continue his hot streak when Villanova visits James Madison this Saturday at 2:30 pm ET.