TEXAS A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel, Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te'o and Kansas State quarterback Collin Klein are the finalists for the Heisman Trophy, it was announced Monday.
Manziel is the favorite to win college football's most famous player of the year award when it is presented Saturday night in New York. He would be the first freshman to win the Heisman and the first Texas A&M player since halfback John David Crow won the school's only Heisman in 1957.
Te'o is trying to become the first defense-only player to win a Heisman and the eighth player from Notre Dame. The Fighting Irish have had seven Heisman winners, tied for the most, but none since Tim Brown in 1987. He already has won the Butkus (top linebacker) and Bronko Nagurski (top defensive player) awards.
Klein would be the first player from Kansas State to win the Heisman.
In other college football news:
* Penn State quarterback Matt McGloin won the Burlsworth Award, given to the top player who began his career as a walk-on. The award is named for former Arkansas offensive lineman Brandon Burlsworth.
* Former Kentucky coach Joker Phillips joined the staff at No. 4 Florida as receivers coach and recruiting coordinator.
* The University of Idaho announced that Paul Petrino will be its new coach. Petrino has been the offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach at Arkansas.
In other college news:
* A report by the Penn Graduate School of Education Center for the Study of Race and Equity in Education says that most of the schools in the NCAA's six major sports conferences have weak graduation rates for their African-American male student-athletes by almost any measure. Data from the 4-year study of athletes from the schools that comprise the ACC, Big East, Big Ten, Big 12, Pac 12 and SEC show that on average, 50.2 percent of African-American male student-athletes graduated within 6 years and that 96.1 percent of the schools graduated African-American male student-athletes at rates lower than student-athletes overall. The Penn study refutes an NCAA claim that African-American male student-athletes are 10 percent more likely to graduate than their same-race male peers who are not members of intercollegiate sports teams.
Sport Stops *
Utah officials announced plans for a longshot bid for another Winter Olympics, saying they already have the venues in place and have left behind the taint of a bribery scandal from the 2002 games. The bid for 2026 is contingent on the U.S. Olympic Committee deciding it will endorse a city for those games.
* Forward Alex Morgan has won the U.S. Soccer Federation's female athlete of the year award. Morgan led Team USA this year with 28 goals, including the deciding score in the 123rd minute of the United States' 4-3 win over Canada in the Olympic semifinals. The Americans then won the gold medal.