Harvard's Collier Winters Wins Top Honors at Manning Passing Academy

(From L-R): Archie Manning, Peyton Manning, Collier Winters, Eli Manning and Cooper Manning pose for a photo after Winters won the Wheaties Quarterback Challenge at the 2011 Manning Passing Academy at Nicholls State

THIBODAUX, La. — Harvard Crimson quarterback Collier Winters stood tall this past weekend, beating out numerous big-name competitors, to win the "Air It Out" competition at the Manning Passing Academy at Nicholls State University.

Winters, who served as a camp counselor, topped 36 collegiate and professional QBs in the camp's main exhibition in front of 1,200 campers to earn bragging rights as the most accurate passer.

"There were some really great QBs, so it was an amazing experience to be out there and compete against the best," said Winters.

Names like Andrew Luck of Stanford, Kellen Moore of Boise State, Brandon Weeded of Oklahoma State, Jordan Jefferson of LSU and Greg McElroy of Alabama and the New York Jets are familiar to most college football fans. Less familiar, though, was Winters – an All-Ivy League QB from the banks of the Charles River.  

Winters, a 5 foot 11 senior quarterback known around the league for his ability outside the pocket and on the run, easily advanced to the finals of the three-round competition where he faced off against Austin Davis of Southern Mississippi and Landry Jones of Oklahoma.

In the second and third rounds, QBs had to hit three moving golf carts as they moved across the field – two on crossing routes and one deep "go" pattern down the sideline. Winters was the only competitor to hit all three carts in the finals for the win.

"I was the last to go in each round and I hit all three targets each time," recounted Winters. "All of the Mannings congratulated me after the competition and then we took a group photo. The whole weekend was a lot of fun."

The Manning Passing Academy, a four-day camp run by former NFL quarterback Archie Manning and sons Peyton, Eli and Cooper, is for aspiring college quarterbacks, wide receivers and tight ends.