DALLAS, Texas – East Carolina’s Holton Ahlers is one of 20 semifinalists for the sixth annual Jason Witten Collegiate Man of the Year award the Jason Witten selection committee announced Wednesday.

The award is presented annually to the Division I college football player who has demonstrated a record of leadership by exhibiting exceptional courage, integrity and sportsmanship both on and off the field.

Ahlers, who has led ECU to a 6-4 overall record heading into Saturday’s game against Houston, has completed 249-of-364 passes on the year for an American Athletic Conference-best 2,912 yards. He has completed 68.4 percent of his passes (14th nationally) and has thrown 20 touchdowns while only suffering five interceptions.

This season, the left-hander from Greenville, N.C. has passed for over 300 yards in a game three times with a season-high 465 against South Florida where he threw for six touchdowns in a 48-28 victory in Boca Raton, Fla. Ahlers owns two ECU single game (passing TDs a game/six; passing yards in a game/535) and seven career records (passing yards/13,131; total yards/14,541; TD passes/89; TDs responsible for/113; completions/1,061; pass attempts/1,752 and rushing TDs by a quarterback/24 – tied for first), while also owning five AAC career records including most completions, passing attempts, passing yards, total plays and total yards.

On the national (FBS) level, Ahlers stands and the Top 25 in completions per game (10th/24.90), passing yards (11th), completion percentage (14th), passing yards per game (14th/291.2), total offense (16th/305.8), points responsible for (21st/160) and passing TDs (25th).

Off the field, he is a four-time American Athletic Conference All-Academic Team and seven-time ECU Director of Athletics Honor Roll selection. Ahlers graduated last December of 2021 with a bachelor’s in communication and is currently working towards a second degree in business entrepreneurship.

The full list of semifinalists includes: Derick Hall (Auburn), Matthew Cindric (California), DeWayne Carter (Duke), Holton Ahlers (East Carolina), Dillon Gibbons (Florida State), Tailon Leitzsey (Illinois), Kaevon Merriweather (Iowa), Blake Corum (Michigan), Tanner Morgan (Minnesota), Austin Williams (Mississippi State), Xavier McDonald (Navy), Isaiah Moore (North Carolina State), Kamryn Babb (Ohio State), Brendon Evers (Oklahoma State), Alex Forsyth (Oregon), Sean Clifford (Penn State), Deslin Alexandre (Pittsburgh), Hendon Hooker (Tennessee), Sam Hartman (Wake Forest) and Edefuan Ulofoshio (Washington).

Three finalists will be named for the award on Wednesday, December 14. The winner will be announced at the award ceremony in Frisco, Texas, on February 23, 2023.