Oregon offensive coordinator Mark Helfrich has been tabbed the national Quarterbacks Coach of the Year by college football webzine FootballScoop.com.
Helfrich, in his 4th year as Oregon’s offensive coordinator and quarterback coach, was nominated for the ‘position coach of the year’ by coaches, athletic directors and athletic department personnel from other programs around the country.
The honor of “Quarterbacks Coach of the Year” is due in large part to the success and maturation of Duck redshirt freshman signal caller Marcus Mariota. Mariota started each of the Ducks 12 games and has thrown for 2,511 yards and 30 touchdowns.
What stands out even more is Mariota’s completion percentage of 69.9 percent connecting on 218 of 312 pass attempts.
Mariota’s passer rating of 165.4 ranked 6th nationally and led the Pac-12 among quarterbacks.
“The role that Mark Helfrich played in the development of Marcus Mariota as a freshman certainly speaks for itself,” said Oregon head coach Chip Kelly.
“He did an outstanding job of molding the talents of a very special young man into the framework of our offense and teaching Marcus how to maximize his understanding of the game. Yet Mark’s success is nothing new as I now have witnessed his ability to relay his expertise to student-athletes for the last four years.”
Although Oregon’s blur offense is the primary brainchild of Chip Kelly, Helfrich deserves a lot of credit for the high scoring and precise execution of the offensive unit.
The Ducks currently rank 2nd nationally in scoring at 50 points per game and 3rd overall in rushing yards with 323 yards per game.
While Mariota has shown he has the ability to be extremely accurate in the passing game, he’s also showed flashes of brilliance in the run game. On the season, Mariota rushed the ball 98 times for 690 yards and 4 scores.
Earlier in the week, Mariota became the first freshman quarterback to be named first-team all Pac-12 since USC’s Todd Marinovich claimed that honor in 1989.
The finalists for this years honor were Tom Herman of Ohio State, Brian Lindgren of San Jose State and Del Miller of Kansas State.
Helfrich will officially receive the “Quarterbacks Coach of the Year” award at the American Football Coaches Association convention in January.