IRVING, Texas (Oct. 1, 2020) –The National Football Foundation & College Hall of Fame (NFF) proudly announced today an all-time record of 199 semifinalists for the 2020 William V. Campbell Trophy® Presented by Mazda, establishing an exciting new high-water mark for one of college football’s most sought-after and coveted awards.
Ithaca College senior wide receiver Andrew Vito is one of 40 NCAA Division III to advance as a semifinalist on this distinguished list.
In three season at IC, Vito has hauled in 207 receptions for 2,442 yards and 16 touchdowns. His 207 career receptions and 2,442 yards rank second all-time in school history, while his 88 catches in 2019 set a single-season record. Vito also totaled 1,074 yards during his junior campaign to rank fourth in program history.
Last season, John Hadac ’20 was a Campbell Trophy semifinalist.
“This is terrific news. To set a record for the number of Campbell nominees is extra special during the pandemic because it shows how the stature of the award continues to rise even during these challenging times,” said NFF Chairman Archie Manning, whose sons Peyton (Campbell Trophy® winner) and Eli were named NFF National Scholar-Athletes in 1997 and 2003, respectively. “We have worked hard to expand the profile of the award, and it’s extremely gratifying to have so many schools participate this year with nominations. We believe it sends an important message to the younger student-athletes that you truly can do it all, succeeding on the field, in the classroom and as leaders in the community.”
Celebrating its 31st year, the award recognizes an individual as the absolute best football scholar-athlete in the nation for his combined academic success, football performance and exemplary leadership. The NFF will announce 12-to-14 finalists in November, and each of them will receive an $18,000 postgraduate scholarship as a member of the 2020 NFF National Scholar-Athlete Class Presented by Fidelity Investments. Later this year, one member of the class will be declared as the winner of the 31st Campbell Trophy® Presented by Mazda, having his postgraduate scholarship increased to $25,000 and receiving his own 25-pound-bronze version of the iconic statue.
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.
“It is wonderful to see a record number of semifinalists for the Campbell Trophy® during such a turbulent year, proving the Future for Football is bright,” 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.”
In September 2019, Mazda announced a three-year partnership to become the presenting sponsor of the Campbell Trophy®, kicking off the automaker’s Power of Potential Platform. Fidelity Investments, a leading provider of workplace savings plans in higher education, serves as the presenting sponsor of the NFF National Scholar-Athlete Awards.
Launched in 1959, the NFF National Scholar-Athlete Awards Presented by Fidelity Investments celebrate their 62nd year in 2020. The awards were the first initiative in history to grant postgraduate scholarships based on both a player’s academic and athletic accomplishments, and the NFF has recognized 866 outstanding individuals since the program’s inception. This year’s postgraduate scholarships will push the program’s all-time distribution to more than $11.9 million. The trophy was first awarded in 1990, adding to the program’s prestige. Past recipients include two Rhodes Scholars, a Rhodes Scholar finalist, two Heisman Trophy winners and seven first-round NFL draft picks.
Named in honor of the late Bill Campbell, the trophy has been prominently displayed inside its official home at the New York Athletic Club since 2013, and the winner is honored each year during a special luncheon at the venue.
An All-Ivy League player and the captain of Columbia’s 1961 Ivy League championship team, Bill Campbell found his true calling after an unlikely career change at age 39 from Columbia football coach to advertising executive. His ability to recruit, develop and manage talented executives – all lessons learned on the gridiron – proved to be a critical component of his ability to inspire his business teams to the highest levels of success.
As the CEO and chairman of Intuit, Campbell’s unique talent in building teams allowed him to become one of the most influential individuals in Silicon Valley, using the lessons of the gridiron to mentor Steve Jobs of Apple, Jeff Bezos of Amazon, Sheryl Sandberg of Facebook, Larry Page, Sergey Brin, Sundar Pichai and Eric Schmidt of Google, Scott Cook and Brad Smith of Intuit, John Doerr of Kleiner-Perkins, Dick Costolo at Twitter, Diane Greene of VMWare and countless others. His contributions were recently captured in a book titled “The Trillion Dollar Coach,” and during his lifetime, he affectionally became known as the “Coach of Silicon Valley.”
Campbell joined the NFF Board in 1978 while he was still a coach at Columbia, and he continued to serve with distinction until his passing in 2016. In 2004, the NFF recognized Campbell’s contributions and accomplishments by presenting him with the NFF Gold Medal, the organization’s highest honor. In 2009, the NFF renamed college football’s premier scholar-athlete award as The William V. Campbell Trophy® in his honor.
2020 WILLIAM V. CAMPBELL TROPHY® PRESENTED BY MAZDA SEMIFINALISTS NOTES
- 31st year of the William V. Campbell Trophy® Presented by Mazda
- 62nd year of the NFF National Scholar-Athlete Awards Presented by Fidelity Investments
- 199 Nominations
- 3.67 Average GPA
- 9 Nominees with a perfect 4.0 GPA
- 59 Nominees with a 3.8 GPA or better
- 72 Nominees with a 3.7 GPA or Better
- 18 Academic All-America Selections
- 94 Captains
- 110 All-Conference Picks
- 18 All-Americans
- 85 Nominees from the NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS)
- 45 Nominees from the NCAA Football Championship Subdivision (FCS)
- 20 Nominees from NCAA Division II
- 40 Nominees from NCAA Division III
- 9 Nominees from the NAIA
- 107 Offensive Players
- 72 Defensive Players
- 20 Special Teams Players
|Augustana (IL)||Alek Jacobs|
|Berry (GA)||Jack Carroll|
|Bowdoin (ME)||Nicholas Leahy|
|Case Western Reserve (OH)||Travis Johnston|
|Central (IA)||Blaine Hawkins|
|Concordia (WI)||Connor Stoming|
|DePauw (IN)||Jackson Hamersly|
|Franklin and Marshall (PA)||Garrett Pershy|
|Gallaudet (DC)||Cress Fisher|
|Grinnell (IA)||Rick Johnson|
|Hampden-Sydney (VA)||Tyler Howerton|
|Hardin-Simmons (TX)||Jamie Pogue|
|Hobart (NY)||Kyle Hackett|
|Ithaca (NY)||Andrew Vito|
|Lake Forest (IL)||John Colasacco|
|Lycoming (PA)||Kyle Pierce|
|Massachusetts Dartmouth||Jacob Burkhead|
|Middlebury (CT)||Pete Huggins|
|Millsaps (MS)||Drew Hopkins|
|Moravian (PA)||Jackson Buskirk|
|Ohio Wesleyan||Lucas Cooper|
|Redlands (CA)||Calhoun Helmberger|
|Rhodes (TN)||Mitch Batschelett|
|Saint John’s (MN)||Chris Backes|
|Shenandoah (VA)||Jack Massie|
|Springfield (MA)||AJ Smith|
|St. Thomas (MN)||Zach Bennett|
|SUNY Maritime||Liam McManus|
|Trinity (TX)||Michael Edmonson|
|Tufts (MA)||Khalif Jeter|
|U.S. Merchant Marine Academy (NY)||Matt Restifo|
|Washington U. in St. Louis (MO)||Andrew Whitaker|
|Wesleyan (CT)||Glenn Smith|
|Westminster (PA)||Cameron Mika|
|Wheaton (IL)||Ryan Schwartz|
|Widener (PA)||Ryan Stecklein|
|Wooster (OH)||Eric Kraus|