Alabama’s Jones, Offensive line named best in the Country
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – University of Alabama quarterback Mac Jones was named the winner of the 2020 Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award, the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Education Foundation announced Monday morning.
Jones joins Tide signal-callers AJ McCarron (2013) and Jay Barker (1994) as the only Alabama players to capture the award.
- One of college football’s top passers, Jones sports an NCAA-leading completion percentage (77.0), 203.3 passer rating and 95.8 QBR
- Totaled 4,036 passing yards to rank second in Division I while averaging 336.8 passing yards per game, good for fourth nationally
- Recorded four of the Crimson Tide’s 10 400-plus yards passing performances in program history, the most by any one quarterback at UA
- Selected First Team All-American by the Associated Press, ESPN.com, Pro Football Focus, The Sporting News and USA Today
- Also a finalist for the Heisman Trophy, Davey O’Brien, Manning, Maxwell and Walter Camp Player of the Year
The Golden Arm Award is presented annually to the top upperclassman quarterback set to graduate with their class. The award acknowledges performance on the field, but it goes beyond completion percentage and touchdown strikes. The award values character, citizenship, integrity and those who honor the game. This year’s presentation to honor Jones’ achievements will be pre-recorded and released on Thursday, Jan. 7 on the Golden Arm Award social channels and shared by the University of Alabama.
The Joe Moore Foundation for Teamwork presented the Alabama offensive line with the 2020 Joe Moore Award during a surprise virtual presentation in the Mal M. Moore Athletic Facility Monday afternoon.
Alabama previously won the award for the Most Outstanding Offensive Line Unit in College Football in its inaugural year in 2015, making the Crimson Tide both the first recipient and first two-time recipient of this prestigious award.
“I think this is one of the awards that I really cherish the most because it’s one of the few that honors a group of players, and the offensive line is a special group of guys,” Crimson Tide head coach Nick Saban said. “They all seem to have similar personalities. They all have the same kind of competitive characteristics. They probably play more together as a unit and as a group in terms of how they communicate, how they combination block and all those things than any other group in football. I think this is a tremendous thing that they continue to do in Joe Moore’s honor because it does mean a lot to our group, who has won it before.”
- Starting O-line has featured senior left tackle Alex Leatherwood (12 starts), redshirt senior left guard Deonte Brown (12 starts), redshirt senior center Landon Dickerson (11 starts), redshirt sophomore Emil Ekiyor Jr. (12 starts) and sophomore right tackle Evan Neal (11 starts), while redshirt senior Chris Owens has one start at center and one start at right tackle.
- Alabama’s starting offensive line has only allowed quarterback Mac Jones to be sacked nine times in 12 games on 379 drop backs, or one sack per 42.1 drop backs, while Jones leads the nation in passing efficiency (203.0)
- The Crimson Tide ranks second nationally in rushing touchdowns with 35 (2.92 per game) while ranking fourth in the SEC in rushing offense (185.7 ypg)
- The Alabama offensive front has blocked for the nation’s top-ranked Power Five scoring offense (48.2 ppg), the No. 1 pass efficiency offense (198.48) and No. 5 total offense (535.0).
- The Crimson Tide offensive line features consensus All-Americans and leading candidates for the Outland Trophy (Alex Leatherwood) and Rimington Trophy (Landon Dickerson)
- The veteran group boasts 126 career starts and their play has been the catalyst behind Alabama’s three Heisman Trophy candidates Najee Harris, Mac Jones and DeVonta Smith
The Joe Moore Award voting committee judges solely on six criteria: toughness, effort, teamwork, consistency, technique and finishing and is the only award in college football that celebrates a group or unit.
The award is named after Joe Moore, widely regarded as one of the best offensive line coaches in college football history, most notably for his work at Notre Dame and the University of Pittsburgh. Coach Moore sent 52 players on to the NFL, including Bill Fralic, Mark May, Russ Grimm, Jimbo Covert and others. The Joe Moore Award trophy, crafted by legendary sports sculptor Jerry McKenna, is the largest trophy in college football, standing at a height of six feet and weighing in at 800 pounds. The perpetual trophy is made available for display by the winning university until the conclusion of the following college football season.