NFF reveals list of 181 semifinalists for Campbell Trophy

IRVING, Texas – Recognizing one of the most impressive groups of scholar-athletes in the history of college football, The National Football Foundation & College Hall of Fame (NFF) proudly announced today the 181 semifinalists for the 2017 William V. Campbell Trophy®, presented by Fidelity Investments®. The award recognizes an individual as the absolute best football scholar-athlete in the nation.The NFF will announce 12-14 finalists on Nov. 1, and each of them will receive an $18,000 postgraduate scholarship as a member of the NFF National Scholar-Athlete Class, presented by Fidelity Investments. The finalists will travel to New York City for the 60th NFF Annual Awards Dinner on Dec. 5, where their accomplishments will be highlighted in front of one of the most powerful audiences in all of sports. Live during the event, one member of the class will be declared as the winner of the 28th William V. Campbell Trophy® and have his postgraduate scholarship increased to $25,000.

“These 181 impressive candidates truly represent the scholar-athlete ideal,” said NFF Chairman Archie Manning whose sons Peyton (Campbell Trophy® winner) and Eli were named NFF National Scholar-Athletes in 1997 and 2003, respectively. “It is important for us to showcase their success on the football field, in the classroom and in the community. This year’s semifinalists further illustrate the power of our great sport in developing the next generation of influential leaders.”

Named in honor of the late Bill Campbell, former chairman of Intuit, former player and head coach at Columbia University and the 2004 recipient of the NFF’s Gold Medal, the Campbell Trophy® is a 25-pound bronze trophy and increases the amount of the recipient’s grant by $7,000 for a total postgraduate scholarship of $25,000, which is endowed by HealthSouth. This year’s postgraduate scholarships will push the program’s all-time distribution to more than $11.3 million. Since 2013, the Campbell Trophy® has been prominently displayed inside its official home at the New York Athletic Club.

“The NFF would like to personally congratulate each of the nominees as well as their schools and coaches on their tremendous accomplishments,” said NFF President & CEO Steve Hatchell. “We are extremely proud to highlight each semifinalist’s achievements, showcasing their ability to balance academics and athletics at the highest level. The NFF Awards Committee will have an incredibly difficult task in selecting the finalists from this outstanding group of candidates.”

Nominated by their schools, which are limited to one nominee each, candidates for the awards must be a senior or graduate student in their final year of playing eligibility, have a GPA of at least 3.2 on a 4.0 scale, have outstanding football ability as a first team player or significant contributor and have demonstrated strong leadership and citizenship. The class is selected each year by the NFF Awards Committee, which is comprised of a nationally recognized group of media, College Football Hall of Famers and athletics administrators.

  • 59th Year of the NFF National Scholar-Athlete Program
  • 181 Nominations
  • 3.59 Average GPA
  • Nominees with a perfect 4.0 GPA
  • 40 Nominees with a 3.8 GPA or better
  • 60 Nominees with a 3.7 GPA or Better
  • 27 Academic All-America Selections
  • 114 Captains
  • 76 All-Conference Picks
  • 19 All-Americans
  • 10 Members of the 2017 AFCA Good Works Team
  • 71 Nominees from the NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS)
  • 37 Nominees from the NCAA Football Championship Subdivision (FCS)
  • 30 Nominees from NCAA Division II
  • 33 Nominees from NCAA Division III
  • 10 Nominees from the NAIA
  • 102 Offensive Players
  • 67 Defensive Players
  • 12 Special Teams Players

Launched in 1959, the NFF National Scholar-Athlete Awards program became the first initiative in history to award postgraduate scholarships based on both a player’s academic and athletic accomplishments, and it has recognized 828 outstanding individuals since its inception. The Campbell Trophy®, first awarded in 1990, adds to the program’s prestige, having previously honored two Rhodes Scholars, a Rhodes Scholar finalist, two Heisman Trophy winners and five first-round NFL draft picks.

In 2011, the NFF and Fidelity Investments launched a multi-year initiative between the two organizations to celebrate the scholar-athlete ideal and a joint commitment to higher education. As part of the initiative, Fidelity became the first presenting sponsor of the NFF National Scholar-Athlete Awards program. In 2014, Fidelity became the presenting sponsor of the Campbell Trophy®.

Fidelity also helped launch the NFF Faculty Salutes, which recognize the contributions of the faculty athletics representatives at each of the institutions with an NFF National Scholar-Athlete. As part of the initiative, the NFF presents each of the faculty representatives with a plaque, and Fidelity donates $5,000 for the academic support services at each school with a total of $440,000 distributed from 2011-16.

The past recipients of The William V. Campbell Trophy® are listed here on



Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS)

Akron – Zach Guiser
Arizona State – Jacom Brimhall
Arkansas State – Blaise Taylor
Auburn – Daniel Carlson
Ball State – Vinnie Palazeti
Boise State – Mason Hampton
Bowling Green State – Nate Locke
Brigham Young – Keyan Norman
Buffalo – Tim Roberts
California – Matt Anderson
Central Michigan – Joe Ostman
Duke – Gabe Brandner
East Carolina – Thomas Sirk
Eastern Michigan – Jason Beck
Florida – Johnny Townsend
Georgia – Jeb Blazevich
Georgia State – Chandon Sullivan
Georgia Tech – Andrew Marshall
Illinois – Malik Turner
Iowa State – Jake Campos
Kansas State – Trent Tanking
Kentucky – Austin MacGinnis
LSU – Danny Etling
Marshall – Ryan Yurachek
Maryland – Adam Greene
Memphis – Riley Ferguson
Miami (FL) – Braxton Berrios
Michigan – Mike Wroblewski
Michigan State – Brian Allen
Middle Tennessee State – Canon Rooker
Minnesota – Andrew Stelter
Mississippi – Gary Wunderlich
Mississippi State – Martinas Rankin
Nebraska – Chris Weber
Nevada – Austin Corbett
New Mexico State – Dalton Herrington
North Carolina State – Cole Cook
North Texas – Andy Flusche
Northern Illinois – Shane Wimann
Northwestern – Justin Jackson
Notre Dame – Greer Martini
Oklahoma State – Brad Lundblade
Old Dominion – Rob Thompson
Oregon State – Nick Porebski
Penn State – Brandon Smith
Pittsburgh – Ryan Winslow
Rice – D.J. Green
San Jose State – Nate Velichko
SMU – Evan Brown
South Alabama – Harrison Louden
South Carolina – Cory Helms
Southern Mississippi – Picasso Nelson
Stanford – David Bright
Syracuse – Jordan Martin
TCU – Patrick Morris
Temple – Nick Sharga
Tennessee – Todd Kelly Jr.
Texas State – Gabe Loyd
Texas Tech – Cameron Batson
Toledo – Cody Thompson
Tulane – John Leglue
UNLV – Kurt Palandech
UTSA – Brady Jones
Vanderbilt – Tommy Openshaw
Virginia – Micah Kiser
Wake Forest – Cam Serigne
Washington State – Peyton Pelluer
West Virginia – Mike Molina
Western Kentucky – Marcus Ward
Wisconsin – Joe Ferguson
Wyoming – Drew Van Maanen

Football Championship Subdivision (FCS)

Brown – Richard Jarvis
Bucknell – Mark Pyles
Campbell – Brian Stryffeler
Columbia – Anders Hill
Dartmouth – Jack Heneghan
Davidson – Taylor Mitchell
Dayton – Jack Crain
Delaware – Jalen Kindle
Duquesne – Nathan Stone
Eastern Illinois – Cody Edwards
Eastern Kentucky – Jeffrey Canady
Florida A&M – Vincent Jefferies
Harvard – Tanner Lee
Illinois State – Alec Kocour
Jacksonville State – Justin Lea
Lehigh – Jimmy Mitchell
Marist – Marcellus Calhoun
Montana State – Mitch Herbert
New Hampshire – Nick Marino
Nicholls State – Brian Hernandez
North Dakota State – Grant Morgan
Northern Iowa – Jared Farley
Pennsylvania – Justin Watson
Princeton – Chad Kanoff
Sacramento State – Jonathan Bade
San Diego – Max Michaels
South Dakota – Chris Streveler
South Dakota State – Jake Wieneke
Stephen F. Austin – Marlon Walls
Stetson – Austin Tyrrell
Tennessee Tech – Dontez Byrd
Weber State – Andrew Vollert
Western Carolina – A.J. Newman
Western Illinois – Jacob Judd
William & Mary – Andrew Caskin
Yale – Karl Marback
Youngstown State – Hunter Wells

Division II

Ashland (Ohio) – Dominic Giunta
Augustana (S.D.) – Sam Lee
Azusa Pacific (Calif.) – Andrew Elffers
Bemidji State (Minn.) – Jacob Krause
Bentley (Mass.) – Rogers Boylan
Black Hills State (S.D.) – Phydell Paris
California (Pa.) – Taylor Nikithser
Cheyney (Pa.) – Samuel Anojulu
East Stroudsburg (Pa.) – Devon Ackerman
Eastern New Mexico – Kamal Cass
Edinboro (Pa.) – Ryan Stratton
Harding (Ark.) – Gavin De Los Santos
Malone (Ohio) – Jon Zimmerly
Mississippi College – Chris Manning
Newberry (S.C.) – Dakota Mozingo
Northern State (S.D.) – Brian Sumption
Oklahoma Baptist – Trey Tully
Shepherd (W.Va.) – Myles Humphrey
Shippensburg (Pa.) – Ryan Zapoticky
Slippery Rock (Pa.) – Marcus Martin
South Dakota School of Mines – Blake Stone
Southern Arkansas – Elgin Moore
Southern Connecticut State – Ryne Griesenauer
Stonehill (Mass.) – Matt Foltz
Tarleton State (Texas) – Zed Woerner
Tiffin (Ohio) – Jalen Santoro
Wayne State (Mich.) – Manny Mendoza
West Chester (Pa.) – Tyler Karpinski
West Texas A&M – Dillon Vaughan
Wingate (N.C.) – Zack Singleton

Division III

Alma (Mich.) – Lars Murray
Bethel (Minn.) – Josh Dalki
Carnegie Mellon (Pa.) – Sam Benger
Case Western Reserve (Ohio) – Cody Calhoun
Central (Iowa) – Sam Markham
Chicago (Ill.) – Chandler Carroll
Dubuque (Iowa) – Conor Feckley
East Texas Baptist – Ty Parsons
Franklin & Marshall (Pa.) – Zachary Bradley
Frostburg State (Md.) – Raheem Ramsey
Gallaudet (D.C.) – Devaron Scott
Grinnell (Iowa) – Tony Bergida
Hardin-Simmons (Texas) – Matthew Hawkins
Hope (Mich.) – Brandon Ellsworth
Illinois College – Jacob Homann
Kenyon (Ohio) – Brandon Byrd
Lake Forest (Ill.) – Thomas Steen
Lycoming (Pa.) – Mike Ward
Maine Maritime – Cody O’Brien
Manchester (Ind.) – Eric Beard
Monmouth (Ill.) – Kyle Schultz
Mount Union (Ohio) – Matt Fitchet
Ohio Wesleyan – Richard Spernoga
Redlands (Calif.) – Mitch Kidd
Rhodes (Tenn.) – Blake Jacobs
Saint John’s (Minn.) – David Franta
St. Thomas (Minn.) – Isaac Seering
Washington & Jefferson (Pa.) – Jesse Zubik
Wisconsin-Oshkosh – Brett Kasper
Wisconsin-Stevens Point – Blake Lehman
Wisconsin-Stout – Jared Allen
Wisconsin-Whitewater – Tony Gumina
Wooster (Ohio) – Patrick Mohorcic


Bethel (Tenn.) – Cole Andrews
Cumberland (Tenn.) – Chandler Peeples
Dakota State (S.D.) – Jacob Giles
Hastings (Neb.) – Anthony Cloyd
Montana Western – John Munger
Morningside (Iowa) – Logan Rozeboom
Peru State (Neb.) – Gunnar Orcutt
Saint Mary (Kan.) – Kyle Dougherty
Southeastern (Fla.) – Collin Thomas
Southwestern Assemblies of God (Texas) – Matt Lighter

About Fidelity Investments
Fidelity’s mission is to inspire better futures and deliver better outcomes for the customers and businesses we serve. With assets under administration of $6.4 trillion, including managed assets of $2.3 trillion as of August 31, 2017, we focus on meeting the unique needs of a diverse set of customers: helping more than 26 million people invest their own life savings, 23,000 businesses manage employee benefit programs, as well as providing more than 12,500 financial advisory firms with investment and technology solutions to invest their own clients’ money. Privately held for 70 years, Fidelity employs more than 40,000 associates who are focused on the long-term success of our customers. For more information about Fidelity Investments, visit
About The National Football Foundation & College Hall of Fame
Founded in 1947 with early leadership from General Douglas MacArthur, legendary Army coach Earl “Red” Blaik and immortal journalist Grantland Rice, The National Football Foundation & College Hall of Fame is a non-profit educational organization that runs programs designed to use the power of amateur football in developing scholarship, citizenship and athletic achievement in young people. With 120 chapters and 12,000 members nationwide, NFF programs include, the College Football Hall of Fame in Atlanta, The William V. Campbell Trophy® presented by Fidelity Investments, annual scholarships of more than $1.3 million and a series of initiatives to honor the legends of the past and inspire the leaders of the future. NFF corporate partners include Delta Air Lines, Fidelity Investments, Herff Jones, New York Athletic Club, Pasadena Tournament of Roses, PrimeSport, the Sports Business Journal, Under Armour and VICIS. Learn more at
About The National College Football Awards Association

The William V. Campbell Trophy® is a member of the National College Football Awards Association (NCFAA), which encompasses college football’s most prestigious awards. Founded in 1997, the NCFAA and its 23 awards now boast over 800 recipients, dating to 1935. Visit to learn more about our story.


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