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College football: Herrick racking up honors

Valencia High grad up for eight accolades

Posted: August 14, 2010 7:19 p.m.
Updated: August 15, 2010 4:55 a.m.

Valencia High graduate and Northern Arizona quarterback Michael Herrick takes a snap against Ole Miss last season.

 

The list is growing for a player who has never been one for individual accolades.

Valencia High graduate and Northern Arizona University senior quarterback Michael Herrick has received eight preseason honors.

“I am honored,” he said. “It is kind of exciting for me and my family. I worked really hard. I didn’t play for a while. I think I am where I was in high school.”

But the California passing yardage king added: “It is what it is. It’s a preseason award and it means nothing. I’m looking for a national championship. That’s what matters to me is the team and not myself.”

Herrick has been honored with the following 2010 preseason distinctions: Lowe’s Senior Class Award nominee, Sports Network Preseason All-America, Phil Steele Preseason All-America, JB Scouting Inc. Preseason All-America, Consensus Draft Services Preseason All-American, Preseason All-Big Sky and Preseason Phil Steele All-Big Sky.

“He really downplays individual recognition and accomplishment,” said NAU head coach Jerome Souers. “He’s quick to compliment his teammates. I really think the players around him play harder because of that mentality.”

The biggest honor Herrick has received is he was put on the watch list for the Walter Payton Award, which goes annually to the top offensive player in the Football Championship Subdivision.

Herrick wasn’t on the list before last season, but he ended up being a finalist for it by season’s end.

He passed for 3,365 yards and 22 touchdowns to eight interceptions. He also completed 66.3 percent of his passes and had a 149.5 passer rating.

On Nov. 21, Herrick shattered the school record for passing yards in a game, as he torched the Eastern Washington defense for 574 yards, which was the 11th best single-game performance in FCS history. He also completed 47-of-65 passes for four touchdowns.

The 22-year-old, who transferred to NAU from Ole Miss in 2007, also got an opportunity to play against his former team in Oxford, Miss. on Nov. 7.

Herrick was 20-of-31 for 233 yards and an interception in a 38-14 loss against the Football Bowl Subdivision team.

“For me personally, it was a great experience. I finally got to play there,” he said. “It was a sense of closure. I played well and showed the people that were there when I was a freshman that I could play.”

The 6-foot, 1-inch, 205-pound quarterback finished ninth in the Walter Payton Award voting last season.

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