Georgia’s Aaron Murray doesn’t own a Heisman Trophy or a national championship ring, but the Southeastern Conference coaches voted him as the league’s top quarterback entering the season.
Murray was named first-team preseason All-SEC in voting by the league’s coaches that was released on Thursday.
Heisman winner Johnny Manziel, from Texas A&M, is on the second team and AJ McCarron, who has led Alabama to back-to-back BCS national titles, is on the third team.
Coaches were not permitted to vote for their own players.
The media who cover the SEC voted Murray third-team preseason All-SEC in July. They had Manziel first team and McCarron second team.
Murray might have benefited by the coaches voting later this year instead of leading up to SEC Media Days in July. Voting takes place 7 to 10 days prior to the announcement of the awards, according to SEC spokesman Chuck Dunlap.
Manziel is practicing this month under the scrutiny of ESPN reports he was paid by brokers to sign memorabilia.
Murray is the first SEC quarterback to pass for 3,000 yards three consecutive seasons and he ranked second in the nation in pass efficiency last season while setting a school single-season record with 36 touchdown passes.
“He’d be my pick,” offensive coordinator Mike Bobo said Thursday night. “He’s our guy. I wouldn’t trade him for anybody in the league or the country. I’m glad he’s on our football team.”
Georgia had eight players selected preseason All-SEC by the coaches. Alabama led the way with 16 selections and Louisiana State also tied for second with eight. Georgia and Alabama tied for the most first team selections on offense with three.
Tailback Todd Gurley and tight end Arthur Lynch also made the first team from Georgia.
Defensively, South Carolina end Jadeveon Clowney was a first-team pick.
Alabama linebacker C.J. Mosley and safety HaHa Clinton-Dix were also selected.