Oct. 28, 2010
MADISON, Wis. -- Wisconsin senior quarterback Scott Tolzien has been named a National Football Foundation Scholar-Athlete, the NFF announced today. Tolzien was one of 16 student-athletes selected from a candidate pool of 121 semifinalists from among all NCAA divisions and the NAIA.
Tolzien becomes the fifth Badger player in school history to be named a National Football Foundation Scholar-Athlete joining Dave Fronek (1966), Tom Stauss (1979), Jim Leonhard (2004) and Joe Thomas (2006).
Candidates must be a senior or graduate student in their final year of eligibility, have a grade point average of at least 3.2 on a 4.0 scale, have outstanding football ability as a first team player and have demonstrated strong leadership and citizenship. The 121 semifinalists for the award were announced on Sept. 30, and 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 2010 National Scholar-Athlete Class represents all that is right about college football," said NFF Chairman Archie Manning. "They have balanced practice with difficult majors like mechanical engineering and biology. They've also taken their passion for helping others beyond their local communities, taking medical and mission trips overseas to help those less fortunate than themselves. They are prime role models for future generations of young men in this country."
Tolzien, a 2009 Academic All-Big Ten and Big Ten Distinguished Scholar honoree, has a 3.5 GPA in consumer science. His work in the community has been well-documented, as highlighted by the feature that aired on ESPN College GameDay detailing his relationship with Jaxson Hinkens, a young boy going through a battle with cancer. On the field, Tolzien has led the Badgers to a 17-4 record in his two seasons as a starter. He also holds the school career records for pass efficiency (148.1) and completion percentage (.669).
"Scott truly represents what we want our student-athletes to be at Wisconsin," UW head coach Bret Bielema said. "This is a tremendous award and a well-deserved honor. It is nice to see his hard work in the class room, in the community and on the football field be rewarded. He is a great leader on our team and it is a pleasure for us to coach him."
Each finalist will receive an $18,000 postgraduate scholarship, and one of the 16 will be announced as the recipient of the 21st William V. Campbell Trophy, endowed by HealthSouth, which recognizes an individual as the absolute best scholar-athlete in the nation. Renamed last fall 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 a $25,000 post-graduate scholarship.
The 2010 National Scholar-Athlete Class will be honored at the 2010 NFF Annual Awards Dinner December 7 at the Waldorf=Astoria in New York City. The event will also include the induction of the 2010 College Football Hall of Fame Class (including Wisconsin Director of Athletics Barry Alvarez) and the presentation of several major awards, including the organization's highest honor, the Gold Medal, to American icon Bill Cosby and the Distinguished American Award to renowned journalist and author Tom Brokaw.
2010 National Football Foundation Scholar-Athletes
Sam Acho, DE, Texas
Anthony Castonzo, OT, Boston College
Ben Chappell, QB, Indiana
Alex Gross, LB, Columbia
Owen Marecic, FB-LB, Stanford
Greg McElroy, QB, Alabama
Mike Mohamed, LB, California
Travis Nissley, LB, Bucknell
Isaac Odim, RB, Minnesota-Duluth
Christian Ponder, QB, Florida State
Derek Sherrod, OT, Mississippi State
Nate Solder, OT, Colorado
Chris Stewart, G, Notre Dame
Scott Tolzien, QB, Wisconsin
Ben Wartman, HB, St. Thomas (Minn.)
Stefen Wisniewski, G, Penn State