Heel Tough Blog: Howell Named ACC Rookie of the Year
When Sam Howell committed to Carolina last December, Tar Heels fans knew it was a big deal for a program that was in search of consistent quarterback play. After a off-season long quarterback battle, Howell was named the starter shortly before the opener against South Carolina. While we didn't know what to expect, we knew the uber talented signal caller from Indian Trial, NC was going to be a treat to watch. At the time we didn't know how special he was, but after two 4th quarter comebacks to start the season, you could tell this kid was a different breed. Howell improved from week to week, and in the process broke not only school records, but even conference and national records. Sam threw for 35 touchdowns in the regular season, which is the most in program history, tied for most in ACC regular season history, and the most for true freshman in FBS history. Howell also led the ACC in passing yards, as well. All of his individual success earned him the ACC Offensive Rookie & ACC Rookie of the year, all in addition to being 3rd team All-ACC. His impressive play is a big part as to why Carolina is going to a bowl game for the first time since 2016, and why there's so much optimism around the program heading into 2020. With a bowl game left to be played, Howell can tie or break Jameis Winston's record for most touchdowns by a freshman, Winston threw 40 back in Florida State's 2012-13 championship season.