The announcement was made Wednesday by Atlantic Coast Conference Commissioner John Swofford.
The Weaver-James-Corrigan Award is presented to top male and female student-athletes in the ACC who have performed with distinction in both the classroom and their respective sport, while demonstrating exemplary conduct in the community. The award is named after the first three commissioners in ACC history, Jim Weaver, Bob James and Gene Corrigan.
Watson is the first Clemson quarterback to win the award since Steve Fuller in 1979. Clemson co-offensive coordinator Tony Elliott won the award in 2004.
Watson was the only male student-athlete at Clemson honored with a Weaver-James-Corrigan Award in the 2016-17 academic year. Clemson women’s soccer players Emily Byorth, Gabrielle Byorth and Abby Jones, were also honored.
Watson was one of six ACC football players to be honored by the ACC. The others are Dontez Ford of Pittsburgh, Ryan Janvion of Wake Forest, Kevin Kavalec of Boston College, Corey Robinson of Notre Dame, and Harrison Butker of Georgia Tech.
Watson is the first Clemson football player to receive a Weaver-James-Corrigan Award since Chandler Catanzaro in 2014. Other Dabo Swinney products to win the award are Mike Wade (2011), Dawson Zimmerman (2012) and Rashard Hall (2013).
Watson led Clemson to a 14-1 record and the National Championship this past year, the first national title for the Clemson program since 1981. He finished second in the Heisman Trophy voting and was an All-American for the second consecutive year. He graduated from Clemson in just three years and was named Academic All-ACC in 2014 and 2016. He also received the Bobby Bowden Award, which is presented annually to the top student-athlete in college football.
Fifty-four ACC student-athletes from all sports will be honored at the annual Cone Health ACC Postgraduate Luncheon hosted by the Nat Greene Kiwanis Club and presented by ESPN April 12 at the Sheraton Four Seasons Hotel Imperial Ballroom in Greensboro. Watson is one of nine ACC student-athletes who will receive an honorary award, as he plans to pursue his sport professionally and not attend graduate school in the short term.
Clemson Football Players to Win the Weaver-James-Corrigan Award:
Ben Anderson (1973), Steve Fuller (1979), Bruce Bratton (1992), Ed Glenn (1995), Andye McCrorey (1996), Chad Carson (2002), Kyle Young (2002), Jackie Robinson (2003), Tony Elliott (2004), Thomas Hunter (2007), Jimmy Manners (2009), Mike Wade (2011), Dawson Zimmerman (2012), Rashard Hall (2013), Chandler Catanzaro (2014), Deshaun Watson (2017).