Special Events:
FCS Polls
All-America Teams
More FCS
FCS Extras
More Football

Eastern Illinois' QB battle in the spotlight

Charleston, IL (SportsNetwork.com) - A quarterback competition usually draws the focus of any football team.

As Eastern Illinois University gets set to open spring practice under new head coach Kim Dameron on Tuesday, the race to be the No. 1 signal caller will have extra attention.

The Panthers' new quarterback in 2014 will replace 2013 Walter Payton Award winner Jimmy Garoppolo.

Garoppolo set numerous EIU and Ohio Valley Conference records, including throwing for 5,050 yards and 53 touchdowns last season. He is expected to be a second-round pick in the NFL Draft in May.

The quarterback competition is expected to be waged by Garoppolo's backups last season, fifth-year senior Andrew Manley and junior Ben Krol, and redshirt freshman Austin Green.

Dameron, the defensive coordinator at Louisiana Tech last year, has taken over an EIU team that is coming off a 12-2 record and a No. 4 final ranking in The Sports Network FCS Top 25. The Panthers advanced to the FCS playoff quarterfinals.

The two-time defending OVC champions will open the 2014 season by visiting the University of Minnesota on Aug. 28.

03/21 11:54:33 ET

Walter Payton Award
Year Winner Votes Finalists Misc
2013 Jimmy Garoppolo Votes 2013 History
2012 Taylor Heinicke Votes 2012 Past
2011 Bo Levi Mitchell Votes 2011 Winners
Buck Buchanan Award
Year Winner Votes Finalists Misc
2013 Brad Daly Votes 2013 History
2012 Caleb Schreibeis Votes 2012 Past
2011 Matt Evans Votes 2011 Winners
Eddie Robinson Award
Year Winner Votes Finalists Misc
2013 Craig Bohl Votes 2013 History
2012 Craig Bohl Votes 2012 Past
2011 Rob Ambrose Votes 2011 Winners
Jerry Rice Award
Year Winner Votes Finalists Misc
2013 Cooper Kupp Votes 2013 History
2012 John Robertson Votes 2012 Past
2011 Terrance West Votes 2011 Winners