CJ Stroud picks up Freshman Breakout Performance Award
Ohio State quarterback CJ Stroud has picked up an award for his big games against Michigan State and Utah. On Monday, the Football Writers Association of America (FWAA) announced Stroud won its Freshman Breakout Performance Award.
Stroud, a Heisman Trophy and Davey O’Brien Award finalist and the Big Ten’s Offensive Player of the Year, was a unanimous selection with the FWAA noting 2 performances worthy of the breakout award.
Against then-No. 7 Michigan State on Nov. 20, Stroud completed 32 of 35 passes (91 percent) for 432 yards with 6 touchdowns and no interceptions in the Buckeyes’ 56-7 win. Of those 432 yards, only 39 came in the second half before he was pulled from the game with Ohio State holding a 49-0 lead.
Stroud’s 6 first-half TD passes put him in an exclusive club of 5 Buckeyes quarterbacks to throw for 6 scores in one half en route to Big Ten Offensive Player of the Week and Freshman of the Week honors. Stroud had 400 yards and only two incompletions in the first half.
Stroud outdid his MSU performance in the Rose Bowl, the Granddaddy of Them All. He was 37-of-46 passing for 573 yards with 6 touchdowns and an interception against Pac-12 champ Utah in the Buckeyes’ 48-45 shootout win.
Stroud shattered Rose Bowl records in the win. The freshman’s 573 yards passing established a new Ohio State single-game record. Stroud finished the season as the Buckeyes’ single-season leader in passing yards per game at 369.6 and pass efficiency (186.6). Stroud’s Rose Bowl Game records include most passing yards and most touchdown passes.
The FWAA Freshman Breakout Performance Award is awarded annually to the college football freshman with the best single-game performance of the season. The previous winners of the Breakout Freshman Award are Kayshon Boutte (LSU, 2020), Jayden Daniels (Arizona State, 2019) and Rondale Moore (Purdue, 2018).