Stanford's Christian McCaffrey Wins 2015 Paul Hornung Award

Mike Chiari@mikechiariFeatured ColumnistDecember 9, 2015

Dec 5, 2015; Santa Clara, CA, USA; Stanford Cardinal running back Christian McCaffrey (5) scores a 28 yard reception and touchdown against the Southern California Trojans in the fourth quarter of the Pac-12 Conference football championship game at Levi's Stadium.  The Cardinal defeated the Trojans 41-22. Mandatory Credit: Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports
Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports

In perhaps the easiest college football award decision of the 2015 season, Stanford running back Christian McCaffrey was named the Paul Hornung Award winner as the most versatile player in the nation Wednesday.

The announcement was made on LouisvilleSports.org, and the sophomore star was thrilled to accept the honor:

I am beyond blessed and humbled to be named the Paul Hornung Award winner. To be mentioned in the same breath with the award's previous winners and Mr. Hornung, one of most versatile players ever to play the sport, is incredible. This honor is a testament to all the efforts and support of my teammates, coaches, staff and the entire Stanford football program.

McCaffrey has enjoyed a season for the ages, as his 3,496 all-purpose yards broke the record previously held by Pro Football Hall of Famer Barry Sanders, according to ESPN Stats & Info.

The son of former Denver Broncos wide receiver Ed McCaffrey has done damage as a runner, receiver, returner and even a passer this season, which was on full display in the Pac-12 Championship Game against USC, per Stanford Football's official Twitter account:

Stanford Football @StanfordFball

461 yds: @CMccaffrey5's biggest game on a Championship stage. Top @HeismanTrophy performance of 2015. #WildCaff https://t.co/Zye64TgYvy

McCaffrey beat out USC's Adoree' Jackson, Ole Miss' Robert Nkemdiche and Michigan's Jabrill Peppers for the sixth-annual award, but it was ultimately no contest.

Hornung starred at Notre Dame and for the Green Bay Packers in the 1950s and 1960s as a running back, quarterback and placekicker, and McCaffrey represents that utilitarian style better than anyone in college football today.

An even greater prize could be on the horizon for McCaffrey, as he is a Heisman Trophy finalist along with Alabama running back Derrick Henry and Clemson quarterback Deshaun Watson, but even if he falls short in his pursuit, he can take solace in knowing that his remarkable contributions this season have been recognized.

Follow @MikeChiari on Twitter.


The latest in the sports world, emailed daily.