NCAA allows record-setting quarterback Doughty to return to WKU for 6th season
By Kyle Neaves


Posted on December 10, 2014 1:20 PM



WKU quarterback Brandon Doughty has been granted a sixth year of eligibility by the NCAA and will return to The Hill for another season in 2015.

Doughty suffered a pair of injuries hampering his complete return to the football field in both the 2011 and 2012 seasons. Once healthy, Doughty directed the Hilltopper offenses to heights never before seen in program history, breaking the school’s single-season passing record in consecutive seasons, the Conference USA single-game passing record, and the school’s career touchdown record in just two seasons at the helm.

“This is a very happy day for all of us around the WKU football family,” said head coach Jeff Brohm. “Brandon is an outstanding young man. He is a leader on our football team, and his work on and off the field has been tremendous. We appreciate the NCAA acting in the best interests of Brandon, and we are very happy to be able to bring him back for one more season.”

“My time at WKU has been very special and I am looking forward to the opportunity to come back for my sixth year to build on what we’ve started this season,” Doughty said. “Having to deal with injuries for two seasons was really tough and I never would have made it through without my faith in God and the support from my coaches, teammates and the athletic department staff. The players in that locker room are like brothers to me, and I am blessed to get to go through one more season with them.”

Doughty has been named  Conference USA’s Most Valuable Player after leading the Hilltoppers to their second FBS bowl berth with a nation-leading 4,344 yards and 44 touchdowns in 2014, the league announced Wednesday.

 

 

Doughty takes home the league’s top honor after being voted MVP by the league’s 13 head coaches. The nation’s top passer eclipsed 300 yards in nine of 12 games and established 14 WKU single-game, single-season and career records in route to leading the Hilltoppers to the Popeye’s Bahamas Bowl.

 

With Doughty earning Conference USA MVP honors, WKU has now had an overall conference, offensive or defensive player of the year in five-consecutive seasons dating back to 2010 (2010-13 Sun Belt Conference).

 

A four-time Conference USA Offensive Player of the Week, Doughty threw for at least three touchdowns on eight occasions, tossed four or more scores in five contests and had four contests in which he passed for five or more touchdowns. His 44 touchdown passes rank 16th in single-season FBS history and with two scoring tosses against Central Michigan in the Bahamas Bowl, Doughty would crack the Top 10 all-time list. The Second Team All-Conference USA quarterback also sits within reach of the single-season C-USA record for touchdown passes, which was set at 48 by Houston’s Case Keenum in 2011.

 

Doughty set an FBS record for touchdown passes in a road game when he threw eight in a win at previously undefeated No.19/24 Marshall and became just the third quarterback in FBS history to toss eight touchdowns against a ranked opponent. Six of those scoring tosses against the Herd came in the first half, which established a C-USA record. The four-time Manning Award Star of the Week also set the league record for single-game passing yards when he torched league rival Middle Tennessee for 593 yards on Sept. 13.

 

Overall, Doughty smashed WKU single-season records for completions (344), attempts (510), yards (4,344), touchdowns (44), completion percentage (67.5) and total offense (4,288) during the regular season. Doughty is already WKU’s career leader in touchdown passes (58) and his 44 this season are more than all but three quarterback’s career totals in WKU’s 96-year history.

 

He’s proven to be one of the most efficient quarterbacks in the nation and the most efficient in C-USA with a rating of 163.5. Doughty enters bowl season as one of three quarterbacks in the FBS with 30 more touchdown passes than interceptions (44 TD, 10 INT). He posted two of the 11 highest passing (yards) totals of the last decade of the FBS and owned the top three individual passing performances in C-USA this season.  Doughty helped the WKU offense generate 25 single-season team records in 2014 and directed the nation’s only unit to hang 60 points on two conference foes this year.

 
In a league featuring the top two active career leading passers in the FBS, Marshall’s Rakeem Cato and Old Dominion’s Taylor Heinicke, Doughty outshined and outdueled both in 2014. Doughty threw for 862 yards and 13 touchdowns while leading the WKU offense to 133 points combined in wins over Marshall and Old Dominion.

WKU and Doughty will begin preparations for the inaugural Popeyes Bahamas Bowl tomorrow, the second bowl game in WKU’s FBS history. The Hilltoppers will have a re-match of their first-ever bowl opponent, Central Michigan, in the Christmas Eve contest set to air on ESPN at 11 a.m. CT.

 




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