- Marcus Mariota wrote it all down, every word of his Heisman Trophy acceptance speech. It was a good thing, too, because getting through it might have been tougher than sprinting away from a linebacker or tossing a touchdown pass for Oregon's understated star.
The junior quarterback became the Ducks' first Heisman winner going away Saturday night, capping a 3-year climb to college football's most prestigious individual award.
"I'm humbled to be standing here today," Mariota said moments after he was announced as the winner.
Mariota isn't a big talker, but he steadily worked through his speech, thanking his teammates, teachers, friends and his home state of Hawaii. He finally hit a snag when it came time to thank his mother and father. He needed to take two deep breaths and still he got choked up.
"I had to give thanks to so many people because where I am today, it's all due to all those people," Mariota said later.
A pinpoint passer with wide-receiver speed, Mariota came into this season as the favorite to win the 80th Heisman and delivered a performance that turned the presentation ceremony at a theater in Times Square into a foregone conclusion.
Mariota had twice as many points (2,534) as second-place finisher Melvin Gordon (1,250), the record-breaking running back from Wisconsin.
Mariota, the first Hawaii native to win the Heisman, has accounted for a Pac-12-record 53 touchdowns (38 passing, 14 rushing and one receiving) while directing the Ducks' warp-speed spread offense.
"In Hawaii, if one person is successful, the entire state is successful," he said, draped in leis at his news conference.
It will be a matchup of Heisman-winning quarterbacks in the College Football Playoff's Rose Bowl semifinal Jan. 1 with Mariota and the Ducks facing Florida State and Jameis Winston.