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Dustin Hopkins a finalist for Wuerffel Trophy

  • Chris Nee

    The All Sports Association, Inc. announced today the 8 finalists for the 2012 Wuerffel Trophy, the national award that honors the college football player who best combines exemplary community service with outstanding academic and athletic achievement.

    The award is named after former Heisman Trophy winner Danny Wuerffel, who led the Florida Gators to the 1996 national championship, played six years in the National Football League and has received national recognition for his humanitarian and community service efforts with Desire Street Ministries in New Orleans and around the country.

    "The All Sports Association membership is honored to recognize the 2012 Wuerffel Trophy finalists and nominees," commented All Sports President Chad Hamilton. "These student athletes embody the Wuerffel Trophy traits of service, character, and excellence, and they are outstanding ambassadors for college football."

    The finalists, who were nominated by their schools' sports information directors or football liaisons, are (listed alphabetically by university):

    Riley Nelson, Senior - Quarterback - Brigham Young

    Cody Wilson, Senior - Wide Receiver - Central Michigan

    Dustin Hopkins, Senior - Kicker - Florida State

    Aaron Murray, Senior - Quarterback - Georgia

    Matt Smith, Senior - Center - Kentucky

    Ben Buchanan, Senior - Punter - Ohio State

    Gabe Ikard, Junior - Offensive Line - Oklahoma

    Matt Barkley, Senior - Quarterback - Southern California

    A committee that includes the Wuerffel Trophy national directors, selection committee members and past winners, will vote on the finalists later this month, and the winner will be formally announced on December 4th. "It seems like every year the bios of these young men get more and more amazing. And this year is no different. I continue to be greatly encouraged by all the things these guys do to serve others," said Danny Wuerffel.

    Past Winners of the award are: 2005-Rudy Niswanger / LSU; 2006-Joel Penton / Ohio State; 2007/Paul Smith-Tulsa; 2008/Tim Tebow-Florida; 2009-Tim Hiller/Western Michigan, 2010-Sam Acho/Texas; 2011-Barrett Jones/Alabama.

    The 2012 Wuerffel Trophy will be presented to the winner at the All Sports Association's 44th Annual Awards Banquet on Friday, February 8, 2013.

    Courtesy of the All Sports Association

    Chris Nee of 247Sports.com. You can follow me on twitter @CNee247.