Coleman named Doak Walker Award Finalist

Tevin Coleman is one of three finalists for the Doak Walker Award, given annually to college football's best running back. All three finalists are from the Big Ten.

Indiana tailback Tevin Coleman, who set a school record for rushing yards in a season with his 228 yards against Ohio State last week, has been named one of the three finalists for the Doak Walker Award, it was announced Tuesday evening.

Coleman has had a magical season. He is second nationally in rushing yards with 1,906.He still has one game to play this Saturday against Purdue in the annual Old Oaken Bucket game.

Here is the release put out Tuesday night by Indiana media relations.

Indiana junior running back Tevin Coleman is one of three finalists for the 2014 Doak Walker Award, the PwC SMU Athletic Forum announced Tuesday evening. Coleman is joined by Nebraska's Ameer Abdullah and Wisconsin's Melvin Gordon. He is the second Hoosier to be recognized as a finalist - Vaughn Dunbar, 1991.

The finalists were determined by a vote of the Doak Walker Award National Selection Committee. The Committee will cast a second ballot, due on the Monday following Championship Saturday, to determine the recipient of the 2014 Doak Walker Award. The recipient will be announced on ESPN during The Home Depot College Football Awards airing live from the Atlantic Dance Hall at Disney's BoardWalk at the Walt Disney World Resort on Thursday, December 11, at 7 p.m. (ET). The award will be presented at the 2014 Doak Walker Award Presentation Banquet in Dallas on Friday, February 27, 2015.

Coleman is 94 yards shy of becoming the 18th player in FBS history to reach 2,000 rushing yards in a single season. He set Indiana's single-season rushing record with his 228-yard performance, to go along with a career-long 90-, 52- and 2-yard TDs at No. 7 Ohio State, breaking Dunbar's 1991 mark of 1,805. He sits ninth on the Big Ten's single-season list.

The Tinley Park, Ill., native is second nationally in rushing yards (1,906), rushing yards per game (173.3), all-purpose yards (2,041), all-purpose yards per game (185.6), yards from scrimmage (2,041) and yards from scrimmage per game (185.6), third in rushing yards per carry (7.91), tied for 13th in rushing touchdowns (15) and tied for 14th in total touchdowns (15) this season.

Coleman shares the national lead with 10 100-yard games, and he is tied for second with six 150-yarders and four 200-yarders. He is leading the country in 20- (10), 30- (9), 40- (8), 50- (6) and 60- (5), and he is tied for the top spot in 70- (3), 80- (2) and 90-yard (1) TD runs.

His 7.9 average trails only Gordon's 8.3 mark among backs with 215 attempts. Mike Rozier holds the FBS record of 7.81 yards per carry (min. 215) set in his Heisman Trophy winning 1983 season. Coleman's career average of 7.3 again trails only Gordon (8.2) and his 129.9 all-purpose yards are eighth among active FBS players. Rozier also holds the FBS career mark of 7.16 yards per carry (min. 415).

Coleman recorded a career-high 307 yards, the second-most in Indiana history and a Rutgers stadium record, on a career-best 32 rushes, a 9.6 average, and a 67-yard touchdown run on Nov. 15. In his last two games, Coleman has 535 yards on 59 carries, a 9.1 average, and four scores.

His average TD distance is 40.3 yards and his average of 173.3 rushing yards per game ranks higher than 68 of the 125 FBS teams.

With their selection, it marks the first time in the 25-year history of the Doak Walker Award that all three finalists represent the same conference. A running back from the Big Ten has been named the Doak Walker Award recipient six previous times.

The three Doak Walker Award finalists will be highlighted on ESPNU during The Home Depot College Football Awards Nomination Special airing Tuesday, November 25, at 6 p.m. (ET). The 30-minute program will be hosted by Brendan Fitzgerald and include analysis from Kevin Carter.

In addition to outstanding performance on the field, candidates for the Doak Walker Award must have demonstrated records of leadership and exhibited the characteristics of sportsmanship and fair play associated with Doak Walker.

Now in its 25th year, the award is named after three-time SMU All-America running back and 1948 Heisman Trophy winner Doak Walker. The versatile Walker, who also punted, returned kicks and kicked extra points, led the Mustangs to two Southwest Conference Championships and brought the school into the national spotlight. Walker was drafted by the Detroit Lions and as a rookie led the league in scoring. During his six years with the Lions, he led the team to two NFL championships and was chosen All-Pro four times. Walker is a member of both the College and Pro Football Halls of Fame.

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