Sept. 27, 2012
EVANSTON, Ill. -- Northwestern senior and starting left tackle Patrick Ward (Homer Glen, Ill./Providence Catholic) is one of 147 candidates for the 2012 National Football Foundation (NFF) Scholar-Athlete Awards and a semifinalist for the William V. Campbell Trophy, the NFF announced Thursday. The Campbell Trophy is presented annually to the most outstanding football scholar-athlete in the nation, taking into account an individual's achievements athletically, academically and in the community.
Ward, who has started 30 consecutive games on Northwestern's offensive line, is a two-time Capital One Academic All-District honoree and a first-team Capital One Academic All-American in 2011. The mechanical engineering major also is a two-time recipient of the Big Ten Distinguished Scholar and Academic All-Big Ten awards.
"This year's candidates truly embody the National Football Foundation's mission of building leaders through football," said NFF Chairman Archie Manning whose sons Peyton (1997 Campbell Trophy winner) and Eli were named NFF National Scholar-Athletes in 1997 and 2003, respectively. "They are standouts in the classroom and on the field and have become leaders in their respective communities. Each school should take great pride in being represented by such well-rounded young men who will undoubtedly go on to do great things in life."
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 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.
"The NFF would like to personally congratulate each of the nominees for maintaining such high standards throughout their collegiate careers," said NFF President & CEO Steven J. Hatchell. "We are extremely proud to showcase their achievements, and there is no question that the NFF Awards Committee will have an incredibly difficult task in selecting the final group of honorees from among this esteemed group."
The NFF Awards Committee will select up to 16 recipients with the results will be announced via a national press release on Thursday, Oct. 25. Each recipient will receive an $18,000 postgraduate scholarship and will vie as finalists for the 2012 William V. Campbell Trophy. Each member of the 2012 National Scholar-Athlete Class will travel to New York City to be honored Dec. 4 during the 55th NFF Annual Awards Dinner at the Waldorf-Astoria where their accomplishments will be highlighted in front of one of the most powerful audiences in all of sports. One member of the class will be announced live at the event as the winner of the Campbell Trophy.
Named in honor of Bill Campbell, the chairman of Intuit, former player and head coach at Columbia University and the 2004 recipient of the NFF's Gold Medal, the award comes with a 25-pound bronze trophy and increases the amount of the recipient's grant by $7,000 for a total post-graduate scholarship of $25,000. A total distribution of $300,000 in scholarships will be awarded at the NFF Annual Awards Dinner, pushing the program's all-time distributions to more than $10.1 million.
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