PSU's Barkley among 18 Maxwell Award semifinalists

Centre Daily Times (TNS)

Saquon Barkley continues to get nationwide attention.

Fresh off a stunning performance with 277 all-purpose yards against Purdue and earning Big Ten Offensive Player of the Week recognition, Barkley was named one of 18 semifinalists for the Maxwell Award on Monday.

Penn State's Saquon Barkley (26) expects to play in Saturday's Big Ten title game.

Presented by the Maxwell Football Club, the award has been given to the national player of the year in college football since 1937.

Barkley, the Big Ten leader in rushing yards (888) and total touchdowns (11), is one of three players representing the conference, joined by Ohio State quarterback J.T. Barrett and Michigan two-way threat Jabrill Peppers.

The Coplay native is also one of four sophomores on the list, accompanied by Peppers, Heisman favorite and Louisville quarterback Lamar Jackson, and Washington quarterback Jake Browning.

Barkley, already 19th on Penn State’s career rushing list, has surpassed 200 yards rushing in two of his past three games, becoming the first Nittany Lion to have multiple 200-yard rushing games since Larry Johnson (four) in 2002.

Oddly enough, Johnson is last Big Ten player to win the Maxwell Award.

Semifinalist voting for the Maxwell Award will begin Tuesday and close Nov. 21 before the three finalists are announced on Nov. 22. Voting is handled by Maxwell Football Club members, college football head coaches, sports information directors and selected media.

Barkley was also named the Big Ten Offensive Player of the Week for his effort against Purdue.

Barkley will look to further boost his stock against Iowa at 7:30 p.m. Saturday in Beaver Stadium.