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The Heisman favorite hasn’t let the spotlight change him

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By Anthony Caruso III
Posted: December 13th, 2014 at 8:06 PM EST

Oregon Ducks quarterback Marcus Mariota is considered the favorite to win the Heisman Trophy ceremony. However, he would not indicate that he’s the favorite.

Mariota, who won the Davey O’Brien Trophy, Maxwell Trophy, and the Walter Camp Player of the Year Awards on Thursday, has been all over the East Coast in the past few days. He won those awards in Florida, then was in Baltimore, Maryland for the Johnny Unitas Award yesterday.

Marcus Mariota (Getty Images)

Marcus Mariota (Getty Images)

Now, he’s in New York City for the Heisman Trophy ceremony. If he does win this prestigious award, he would be the first Oregon player to win it in the 80th year.

“It would be special,” Mariota said. “It would also be an honor, because there’s been many great Oregon players, who haven’t won it.”

The junior signal caller would also be the first Hawai’i-born player to win the award, as well. Two years ago, former Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te’o finished in second place behind former Texas A&M Aggies quarterback Johnny Manziel.

“It’s special,” Mariota added. “I hope it would allow me to make an even bigger impact. There’s a lot of kids back there that would love to be in this position.”

Marietta has gone 254 of 372 for 3,783 yards. He has also thrown for 38 touchdowns to 2 interceptions.

This season, he has the best QBR in college football at 91.9%. The past two years, he was second to Texas A&M Aggies quarterback Johnny Manziel in 2012 and Florida State Seminoles quarterback Jameis Winston last year.

While he’s considering leaving for the NFL draft, the talented player agreed with the other two Heisman finalists that college athletes should be paid.

“Like these two others mentioned, it would be nice,” Mariota acknowledged. “We already have our education paid for, but to be actually paid, that would be an added bonus. We do go through a lot of things, and it would be nice.”

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