NOTRE DAME, Indiana — The winningest quarterback in Notre Dame history, graduate student Ian Book, was selected as the winner of the Pop Warner 2020 National College Football Award. The distinction honors a college football player in his final year of eligibility who has made a difference on the field, in the classroom and in the community, serving as a role model to young athletes. Book earned the honor out of a host of candidates and six finalists from across the FBS.
“Playing college football has been a dream of mine since fourth grade when I started playing Pop Warner. It’s where I learned the importance of hard work, sacrifice and commitment to achieve a team goal,” said Book. “I want to thank Pop Warner for this amazing award. It is truly humbling to be representing Notre Dame and be honored by such an iconic organization. I would like to thank my teammates and coaches. I wouldn’t be here today without them. Go Irish!”
“Ian has led Notre Dame not only to a great season under the most trying circumstances but throughout an historic career as the school’s winningest QB. On top of that, he has demonstrated exceptional leadership on and off the field. What stands out the most is Ian’s dedication to performing his best at the highest level of academics and athletics,” said Jon Butler, Executive Director of Pop Warner Little Scholars. “Ian has shown our Pop Warner student athletes the importance of hard work, perseverance, teamwork and a commitment to school, team and community. We’re honored to have him represent Pop Warner as our 2020 College Football Award winner.”
Book has led the Irish to a perfect 10-0 record in 2020, becoming the all-time winningest quarterback in Notre Dame history. He boasts a 30-3 (.909) record as a starter, and Book is one of just two FBS quarterbacks with a win rate above .900, even as Book ranks 11th overall in total QB career starts (33). His 30 wins are third among all FBS quarterbacks. He has completed 181 passes for 2,382 yards and 15 touchdowns, with just two interceptions in 2020, and has rushed for 465 yards and eight touchdowns on the season. He ranks third among all Power 5 quarterbacks in season rushing touchdowns.
Book, a rare two-time team captain, is the only Power 5 quarterback with more than 240 pass attempts and only two interceptions (or fewer). Book owns 286 attempts with just two picks, and capped the longest streak of passing attempts without an interception in program history at 266 (beginning mid-Game One vs. Duke and ending mid-Game 10 vs. Syracuse), which was the longest-active streak in the FBS.
The graduate student has garnered a number of national accolades this season. He has been named a finalist for the Manning Award, Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award and the Senior CLASS Award, and a semifinalist for the Walter Camp Player of the Year, Maxwell Award and Davey O’Brien Award. Book was named Manning Award Quarterback of the Week vs. Syracuse, and has been named to the Davey O’Brien Great 8 list four times. Book also earned ACC Quarterback of the week following the Pitt game and Manning Award Star of the Week following the Boston College game.
Book graduated from Notre Dame in 2019, with a major in marketing from the Mendoza College of Business, one of the nation’s top-ranked business schools. He is now a graduate student.
Each of the past four seasons, Book has participated in the annual Shop With A Player Christmas event, hosting under-privileged youth from the local St. Joseph County to go holiday shopping. He has also volunteered with the Kelly Cares Foundation, running a football camp for women who survived breast cancer, and he joined the Notre Dame football team to play in a charity fundraiser softball game against local first responders. In high school, Book served as a host for “Evening of Dreams,” a Senior Ball for local youth with disabilities, and was a regular volunteer at the local El Dorado County Foodbank, serving as the “Poster Boy” for the annual Fill The Bowl event. He was the top fundraiser for the Sacramento Shrine Bowl (Shriners Hospital) in the Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl, and was a volunteer at St. Anthony’s Foundation food shelter in San Francisco.
Book was selected as a team captain in 2019 and 2020, joining a group of just 23 other players in the 132-year history of Notre Dame Football who have served multiple seasons as a team captain. He has also served as a ‘SWAT’ leader (captains a group of teammates through spring and summer workouts and training). Book was a member of Notre Dame’s Rosenthal Leadership Academy, which develops and enhances strong leadership with programming for emerging and existing leaders. Student-athletes are nominated by peers and confirmed by coaching staffs. The program supports skill-building, self-awareness, commitment to institution and team goals, and empathy and perspective-taking, allowing student-athletes to consider issues beyond those that directly affect themselves.