College Football Awards 2011: Why Is USC's Matt Barkley Being Blacklisted?

Randy ChambersAnalyst IDecember 9, 2011

LOS ANGELES, CA - NOVEMBER 26:  Quarterback Matt Barkley #7 of the USC Trojans gets ready for the game with the UCLA Bruins at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum on November 26, 2011 in Los Angeles, California.  (Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)
Stephen Dunn/Getty Images

We all know what happened at USC that resulted in the school not being able to participate in bowl games.

But what does that have to do with current quarterback Matt Barkley?

The Trojans junior quarterback has been one of the best at the position this season. He's completed 69 percent of his passes and has thrown for 3,528 yards and 39 touchdowns, all of which are career highs. He also lowered his interceptions, which have always been a problem for him, as he finished with just seven.

His has more passing yards and touchdowns than Andrew Luck, who won the Maxwell award last night and is a Heisman finalist.

There were six games this season in which Barkley threw for over 300 yards and eight games in which he threw for at least three touchdowns.

At the very least, he should have been nominated for an award this season and should have received an invite to New York for the Heisman trophy.

"Congratulations to all the Heisman finalists," Barkley said in a statement released by the school. "They are all great players, and I wish them the best this Saturday and with the rest of their football careers. I thought we gave it a good run this year to get an invitation to New York for the ceremony, but more importantly I am really excited that our team's accomplishments are being recognized and we have now moved up to fifth in the rankings."

That was nice of him, but the problem is that he should have been one of the finalists. I love Tyrann Mathieu, but are his numbers and season really as impressive as Barkley's?

Sure, he makes big, clutch plays, but his NFL-caliber teammates allow him to take those risks and make those plays. If he was to ever make a mistake, the other 10 guys would be there to make up for it.

What about the national quarterback award?

Case Keenum made it over Barkley and he plays in the cupcake C-USA. The only ranked team they played all season completely shut him down. Barkley outplayed a high-scoring Oregon Ducks team and gave them their second loss of the year.

Barkley wasn't a finalist for an award and didn't receive an invite for the Heisman trophy.

If it wasn't for the school breaking NCAA rules, the Trojans would have had a shot to play in the national championship this year. At the very least, they would have received an invite to a BCS bowl.

Seems like those violations cost USC more than a couple bowl games.

Randy Chambers is a B/R Featured Columnist that covers College Football and the NFL. You can contact him @Randy_Chambers or