The Maxwell Award is presented annually to the outstanding collegiate football player in America.
Lynch, who has won back-to-back Mid-American Conference West Division Offensive Player of the Week honors while leading NIU to a 3-1 record so far this year, was one of 13 players added to the Maxwell Award watch list this week. The original Watch List was based on the 2011 performances of returning players.
In his first year as the Huskies’ starting quarterback, Lynch has passed for 845 yards and seven touchdowns on 66-of-103 passing (64.1 percent) and has run for 438 yards and five touchdowns on 64 carries to average 6.8 yards per carry. He ranks 18th in the country in rushing with an average of 109.5 yards per game, and is third among FBS quarterbacks in rushing yards. He is averaging 320.75 yards of total offense per game to rank tied for 14th in the country.
Lynch was named the MAC West Player of the Week for his performances versus both Army and Kansas in the last two weeks. The Chicago native passed for a career high 342 yards and ran for 125 in NIU’s 41-40 victory over Army. He threw the game-winning touchdown pass to Martel Moore with 4:29 to play.
Versus Kansas, Lynch led the Huskies to 17 fourth-quarter points, beginning with a 65-yard touchdown pass to Moore, giving Northern Illinois a 30-23 come-from-behind victory. The junior signal-caller passed for 235 yards and two touchdowns on 23-of-35 passing and ran for 134 yards on 22 carries.
Semifinalists for the Maxwell Award will be announced Monday, Oct. 29, and three finalists for each award will be announced Monday, Nov. 19.