CAPE COD, Mass.—The awards and honors seem to keep rolling in for University of New Hampshire quarterback Ricky Santos (Bellingham, Mass.) who was named ECAC Player of the Year recently.
The announcement was made by ECAC Interim Commissioner Steve Bamford. Santos will receive the honor at the annual Eastern College Football Awards Banquet at the Pegasus Restaurant at the Meadowlands Sports Complex in East Rutherford, N.J. on Feb. 15, 2007.
Santos, who was named the winner of this year’s Walter Payton Award, a “Sports Network” All-American, a Walter Camp All-American and the Atlantic 10 Football Conference Co-Offensive Player of the Year, passed for 29 touchdowns this season and led all players in the conference at the end of the regular season with 12 rushing touchdowns. He also topped the 3,000-yard passing mark for the third straight time in his career with 3,125 yards in 2006. Santos completed 293 of 432 pass attempts and threw only seven interceptions, giving him an impressive completion percentage of 67.8. A first-team All-Atlantic 10 selection, he has broken most of UNH’s career passing records and he was named “National Offensive Player of the Week” twice by “The Sports Network”.
One of the most impressive performances of his career came on Sept. 9 at Northwestern, where he was responsible for five touchdowns vs. the other Wildcats, leading UNH to a decisive 34-17 upset over the Big Ten power. Santos then led UNH to the NCAA Division I Football Championships, where he and the Wildcats played in their third straight quarterfinal appearance. UNH, which finished the 2006 season with a 9-4 overall record, is the only team in the Atlantic 10 to advance to the quarterfinals three consecutive times.
His career statistics over three seasons are staggering. After starting all but the first contest of 2004 at Delaware, Santos has compiled numbers in three years that many quarterbacks struggle to reach in four. He topped the 10,000 yard passing milestone in 2006 and heads into his senior campaign with 10,240 passing yards. He also enters next season with 99 career passing touchdowns, which already ties him for the Atlantic 10’s all-time lead, while he has also rushed for 21 career touchdowns. Since 2004, Santos has completed a school-record 866-1,286 passes. In his 39 games played at UNH, he has helped the Wildcats post an impressive three-year record of 30-9.
Santos and senior wide receiver David Ball (Orange, Vt.) were also both named first-team ECAC Division I-AA All-Stars.