Jul 24, 2013; Chicago, IL, USA; Northwestern Wildcats running back Venric Mark during the Big Ten media day at the Chicago Hilton. Mandatory Credit: Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports

Northwestern Football: Venric Mark named Big Ten Player to Watch


Northwestern senior running back Venric Mark has been named to the Big Ten preseason Players to Watch list, selected by the medial panel attending the Big Ten’s football media days. The watch list features 10 student-athletes, with five players from the Legends and Leaders Divisions.

Mark is joined by Michigan quarterback Devin Gardner, Michigan offensive tackle Taylor Lewan, Michigan State linebacker Max Bullough, Nebraska quarterback Taylor Martinez.

The Leaders Division is represented by Ohio State quarterback Braxton Miller, Ohio state cornerback Bradly Rob, Ohio State linebacker Ryan Shazier, Penn State wide receiver Allen Robinson, and Wisconsin linebacker Chris Borland.

The Houston native has also been named to three national award preseason watch lists: Doak Walker Award (nation’s top running back), Maxwell Award (nation’s best football player), and Walter Camp Award (player of the year).

During his junior season Mark was a second-team All-Big Ten selection at running back for recording 1,366 yards rushing and 12 touchdowns. He was also named a finalist for the Doak Walker Award and the 2012 season Northwestern Offensive MVP.

Mark also served as the Northwestern punt return specialist, averaging 18.7 yards per punt and two touchdown returns for which he was named first-team All-American as a punt returner by the Football Writers Association of America. His all-purpose yard total (2,137) was short by 29 yards of setting the school record in a season, he did rank No. 1 in the Big Ten with 166.6 all-purpose yards per game.

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Tags: Big Ten Big Ten Player To Watch Football Northwestern Northwestern Football Venric Mark