Florida quarterback Jeff Driskel appears on the preseason watch list for the 2014 Davey O'Brien Award, released Wednesday.
The award is given to whomever the Davey O'Brien National Selection Committee wants to give it to (and intended to be awarded to the nation's best quarterback). 39 quarterbacks are on the preseason watch list for 2013, which "was selected based on player performance during the previous year and expectations heading into the 2014 college football season," with the only requirement being "at least one" collegiate start.
In contrast to most other preseason watch lists, Driskel is one of the few SEC quarterbacks on this list. He's joined by just four conference compatriots: Auburn's Nick Marshall, Georgia's Hutson Mason, Mississippi State's Dak Prescott, and Mississippi's Bo Wallace.
Florida quarterbacks Danny Wuerffel (in 1995 and 1996) and Tim Tebow (in 2007) have won the Davey O'Brien Award before. Florida State's Jameis Winston will vie to join Wuerffel among two-time winners in 2014.
College football award watch lists are stupid. They are beholden to confirmation and recency biases, and, while designed to be comprehensive to the point of absurdity, often fail to capture the breadth of talent in the sport.
More than zero college football awards last year went to guys not on preseason watch lists, which is why preseason watch lists are pointless— Rodger Sherman (@rodger_sherman) July 7, 2014
None of the watch lists mean anything: The number of players on those lists means that the quality of player on any given list varies from good to extraordinary, with little demarcation possible, and players who currently lack the notoriety to appear on a watch list but demonstrate the skills to contend for an award in the fall will be judged no less competent for not appearing on these list.
And yet, it's the middle of summer, and we're all "starved" for college football content, so these tidbits are "worth" "noting." This note will appear at the bottom of all "Florida Gators on 2014 college football award watch list" posts. Get used to seeing it.