The College Football Performance Awards (CFPA) added Blake Winkler, Illinois State’s quarterback, to the Quarterback Award watch list last Monday.
Winkler was named to the 2013 Missouri Valley Football Conference (MVFC) All-Newcomer team despite starting the season as a redshirt freshman. In nine games Winkler completed 127-of-217 (58.5 percent) for 1,637 yards along with 12 touchdowns earning him a pass efficiency rating of 132.8, the fourth highest in the MVFC.
“Congratulations to Blake Winkler on earning a spot in this year’s watch list,” CFPA Executive Director Brad Smith said. “Winkler will be one of the top MVFC players to watch in 2014.”
Winkler joins 35 returning performers who are also vying for the top quarterback award within the Football Championship Subdivision. The CFPA winners for 2014 will be announced January 14, 2015.
While Winkler started the last eight games for the Redbirds, he will still face plenty of competition with the recent transfer of Tre Roberson, former Indiana Hoosier quarterback. Roberson started four games and appeared in 12 last season, completing 83-of-138 (60.1 percent) for 1,128 yards and 15 touchdowns.
“Like anyone else, he will need to get situated here, learn the playbook, get to know his teammates and coaches, and get a head start academically,” ISU head coach Brock Spack said. “That is the first test for transfers and by no stretch of the imagination does he think he is going to be the guy. Tre knows that he will have to compete with good players to earn the job this fall.”
It is unclear what role Roberson will have in the Redbird offense, but he adds depth to the roster, making him one of four quarterbacks on the roster.
“He certainly will add a different dimension to our quarterback position with his skill set alongside Blake, Adam [Pittser], Jake [Kolbe] and Trevor [Rea],” Spack said.