NEW YORK – Florida State quarterback Jameis Winston won the 79th Heisman Trophy in a landslide Saturday night, becoming the second consecutive freshman to take home the award.
Winston took college football by storm this season, lifting No. 1-ranked Florida State to its first BCS national championship game appearance since 2000. He put himself on the radar with a stunning performance in the Seminoles' opening victory at Pittsburgh and never stopped, finishing the season with 3,820 passing yards and 38 touchdowns against 10 interceptions. Winston completed 67.9 percent of his passes and led the nation in passing efficiency.
Winston won by the seventh-largest margin of any Heisman winner, but 13 percent of voters left him off their ballots completely.
Alabama's AJ McCarron was second, Northern Illinois' Jordan Lynch was third and Boston College's Andre Williams was fourth. Manziel was fifth in the voting and Auburn's Tre Mason finished sixth.
A native of Hueytown, Ala., Winston was rated by several scouting services as nation's the No. 1 quarterback prospect, choosing Florida State over Alabama and Auburn. He sat out last season as a redshirt while E.J. Manuel quarterbacked the Seminoles to an ACC title and Orange Bowl victory. Winston is also an elite baseball prospect who played for Florida State last spring and plans to play again this year.
On Friday, he said he wanted to be better than Bo Jackson, the last legitimate two-sport star.
"I want to do both the rest of my life," Winston said. "That's my dream."
Winston's path to the Heisman Trophy was nearly derailed on Nov. 14 when a sexual battery complaint from last December resurfaced publicly. That prompted the State Attorney in Florida's 2nd judicial circuit to conduct an investigation, concluding Dec. 7 with the announcement that there was not enough evidence to file charges.
Winston is Florida State's third Heisman winner, joining fellow quarterbacks Charlie Ward in 1993 and Chris Weinke in 2000.
"To win that trophy would be a dream come true but just reflect on how our team has prepared itself and had a great season, and I'd really like that for them," Winston said earlier Saturday. "This has been a special year for me and for Florida State. In the spring we made a decision to be great, and we've been doing what we need to do. We've been preparing ourselves every game and it comes directly from them."