FLORENCE, Ala. – Nigel Barksdale, a Slippery Rock University pre-physical therapy major from San Jacinto, Calif., and a Rock-solid starting quarterback for the football team, has earned a spot among this fall’s elite members of the NCAA Division II football fraternity by being named a Super Region 1 finalist for the Harlon Hill Trophy.
The award is presented annually to the NCAA Division II College Football Player of the Year.
A second-year starter for The Rock, Barksdale earned the nomination by being the throttle man of a no-huddle, air raid offense that ranks among the best in the nation.
SRU currently ranks second among NCAA Division II teams in total offense with a 566.6 yards per game average. The Green and White also rank fifth nationally in scoring offense (45.5 points per game) and fourth nationally in passing offense (373 ypg). Those numbers have propelled The Rock to a 9-2 overall record following Saturday’s Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference Championship Game at Bloomsburg University.
“Anyone who has seen Nigel play this season has come away with the realization he’s one of the best players in the nation,” Rock head coach George Mihalik said, “so being named as Super Region 1 finalist for the Harlon Hill Trophy is well-deserved recognition for him.”
Barksdale ranks fourth among NCAA Division II quarterbacks in passing yards (3,674), passing yards per game (318.2) and total offense. He ranks 10th nationally in touchdown passes.
He has completed 238 of409 (58.8%) pass attempts for 3,669 yards and 30 passing touchdowns this fall. Barksdale has also rushed for 427 yards and four touchdowns this fall. He set SRU school records this fall for passing yards, passing touchdowns, completions and attempts.
A total of 28 candidates, seven from each of the four NCAA Division II super regions, are in the running for the 2013 Harlon Hill Trophy. Sports information directors at the 168 NCAA Division II football-playing institutions nominated candidates for the Hill Trophy and will select the 2013 winner in voting that ends Nov. 22. The winner will be announced at the 28th annual Harlon Hill Trophy Presentation Banquet Dec. 20 at the Florence (Ala.) Conference Center.
Slippery Rock University is Pennsylvania's premier public residential university. Slippery Rock University provides students with a comprehensive learning experience that intentionally combines academic instruction with enhanced educational and learning opportunities that make a positive difference in their lives.