LSU WR Odell Beckham Jr. wins Paul Hornung Award

By Chip Patterson | College Football/Basketball Writer

LSU wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. was named the winner of the 2013 Paul Hornung Award, given annually by the Louisville Sports Commission to the nation's most versatile player.

"It's just an honor and a blessing to even be mentioned with the other guys who were up for the Hornung Award," Beckham said. "I am proud to accept the award and thank the committee for recognizing me.It means a lot to me personally because I have worked extremely hard, long before this season started.

"I had great teammates help me along the way, especially on kickoff and punt returns. None of the opportunities to display my versatility would have been possible if it weren't for my teammates and coaches who put me in a position to succeed."

Beckham was selected over Arizona State running back Marion Grice, Western Kentucky running back Antonio Andrews, Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel and UCLA's two-way freshman, Myles Jack.

Hornung, the 1956 Heisman Trophy winner and holder of the NFL's single-season scoring record, had high praise for Beckham -- even mentioning the LSU wide receiver playing scout team quarterback to help the Tigers defense prepare for Johnny Manziel.

"I love the way Odell Beckham plays the game," Hornung said. "He can run, catch, block and return kicks and plays with great determination. And he has my admiration for lining up on the scout team during the season to help his defense get better. That's how I played the game - doing anything I could to help my team win."

Beckham led the SEC with 185.2 all-purpose yards per game, and finished the regular season ranked fifth in the SEC in receptions per game, fourth in receiving yards per game and third in kick return average. His season total of 2,222 total all-purpose yards is an LSU record and ranks third on the SEC's single-season list behind Randall Cobb (2,396 yards, Kentucky, 2010) and Darren McFadden (2,310 yards, Arkansas, 2007).

LSU will play Iowa in the Outback Bowl on Jan. 1 in Tampa, Fla..

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