DALLAS, Texas - Newberry College senior offensive lineman Lequawn James has been named a semifinalist for the William V. Campbell Trophy presented by the National Football Foundation, the NFF announced today.
In addition to his semifinalist candidacy for the Campbell Trophy (which was previously known as the Draddy Trophy), endowed by HealthSouth, James is also eligible for a 2011 NFF Scholar-Athlete Award. A total of 127 semifinalists were announced, with only 11 coming from the Division II ranks.
James's candidacy marks the third consecutive season a Newberry player has been up for these awards. Newberry and Wayne State (Mich.) are the only Division II schools with a candidate in each of the last three seasons. James' candidacy follows Matt Holmes in 2010 and Brandon Gantt in 2009.
James, a senior from North, S.C., is a three-year starter at guard for the Wolves, and is one of the original members of Newberry's esteemed Order of the Gray Stripe. A captain for the 2011 season, James has been part of an offensive line which has been amongst the nation's leaders in sacks allowed for three seasons. In 2009, the line allowed a sack every 30.6 pass dropbacks and allowed a sack every 30.4 dropbacks in 2010. Currently in the 2011 season, the Wolves rank third in the nation in sacks allowed, giving up just one sack in the first four games of the season.
James has been a member of the South Atlantic Conference Commissioner's Honor Roll for three years, as well as the Newberry College Dean's List. He was a junior class marshal and will graduate in May 2012 with his nursing degree. He has been a resident advisor for three years and was named the Resident Advisor of the Year in one year. He is a member of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, Christians Living Among You and the Metoka Galeda choir.
Just 11 Division II players were recognized this season, with James and Wingate's Cody Haffly the only South Atlantic Conference representatives. James and Clemson punter Dawson Zimmerman are the only players from institutions in South Carolina on the list.
2011 NFF NATIONAL SCHOLAR-ATHLETE CANDIDATES FROM DIVISION II
Clark Atlanta (Ga.) - Aramide Adefemiwa
Colorado School of Mines - Clay Garcia
Colorado State-Pueblo - Lee Meisner
Delta State (Miss.) - Micah Davis
Ferris State (Mich.) - Tom Schneider
Harding (Ark.) - Luke Tribble
Newberry (S.C.) - Lequawn James
St. Cloud State (Minn.) - Matt Theis
Virginia State - William Rudd
Wayne State (Mich.) - Josh Renel
Wingate (N.C.) - Cody Haffly
Click here to view all candidates for the awards
2011 NFF NATIONAL SCHOLAR-ATHLETE CANDIDATE NOTES
- 3.60 Average GPA
- 27 Nominees with a 3.9 GPA or better
- 6 Nominees with a perfect 4.0 GPA
- 86 Team Captains
- 56 All-Conference Picks
- 17 Academic All-America Selections
- 10 All-America Selections
- 27 Players (among all divisions) represented in this week's national top 25 polls
- 1 Player Formerly Named an NFF National High School Scholar-Athlete
- 47 Nominees from the Football Bowl Subdivision
- 33 Nominees from the Football Championship Subdivision
- 11 Nominees from the Division II
- 30 Nominees from the Division III
- 6 Nominees from the NAIA
- 61 Offensive Players
- 50 Defensive Players
- 16 Special Teams Players
About the Campbell Trophy and NFF National Scholar-Athlete 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, and the results will be announced via a national press release on Wednesday, October 26. Each recipient will receive an $18,000 postgraduate scholarship, and they will vie as finalists for the 2011 William V. Campbell Trophy. Each member of the 2011 National Scholar-Athlete Class will also travel to New York City be honored December 6 during the 54th 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 also 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 $9.8 million. Launched in 1959, the NFF scholar-athlete program became the first initiative in history to award post-graduate scholarships based on both a player's academic and athletic accomplishments. The Campbell Trophy, first awarded in 1990, adds to the program's mystique, having previously honored two Rhodes Scholars, a Rhodes Scholar finalist, two Heisman Trophy winners and five first-round NFL draft picks.