93 players receive consideration for award honoring college football’s top community servant


FORT WALTON BEACH, Fla. – July 29, 2021 – The Wuerffel Trophy, College Football’s Premier Award for Community Service, today announced its watch list of 93 players from college football’s Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS).


Named after 1996 Heisman Trophy winning quarterback from the University of Florida, Danny Wuerffel, the Wuerffel Trophy is presented in February annually in Fort Walton Beach, Florida. The trophy exists to honor college football players who serve others, celebrate their positive impact on society, and inspire greater service in the world.


Notable returnees to the Watch List include 2020 semifinalists Michael Saffell (University of California), Mac Brown (University of Mississippi) and Mike Caliendo (Western Michigan University), along with Isaiah Sanders (Stanford University) who was a 2019 finalist at the United States Air Force Academy.  For a full look at the 2021 Wuerffel Trophy Preseason Watch List by university (AP format), please see below. For the 2021 Watch List in traditional (non-AP) format, please click HERE.


Nominations for the Wuerffel Trophy are made by the respective universities’ Sports Information Departments and will close on October 15. An up-to-date list of nominees can be found at beginning on August 1. Semifinalists for the award will be announced on November 2 and finalists will be announced on November 22.


The formal announcement of the 2021 recipient will be made on December 9 and the presentation of the 2021 Wuerffel Trophy will occur in February 2022 in Fort Walton Beach.


Past recipients of the award are:  Rudy Niswanger – Louisiana State University – 2005; Joel Penton – Ohio State University – 2006; Paul Smith – University of Tulsa – 2008; Tim Tebow – University of Florida – 2008; Tim Hiller – Western Michigan University – 2009; Sam Acho – University of Texas – 2010; Barrett Jones – University of Alabama – 2011; Matt Barkley – University of Southern California – 2012; Gabe Ikard – University of Oklahoma – 2013; Deterrian Shackelford – University of Mississippi – 2014; Ty Darlington – University of Oklahoma – 2015; Trevor Knight – Texas A&M University – 2016; Courtney Love – University of Kentucky; 2017; Drue Tranquill - University of Notre Dame; 2018; Jon Wassink - Western Michigan University – 2019; Teton Saltes – University of New Mexico – 2020.


The Wuerffel Trophy is a member of the National College Football Awards Association (NCFAA), which encompasses the most prestigious awards in college football. Founded in 1997, the NCFAA and its 25 awards now boast more than 800 recipients, dating back to 1935. The members of the NCFAA are unveiling their preseason watch lists over a two-week period this month.  Sixteen of the association’s 25 awards select a preseason watch list and the NCFAA has spearheaded a coordinated effort to promote each award’s preseason candidates.  For the complete 2021 preseason watch list calendar, please click HERE.


The Wuerffel Trophy is supported by its corporate partners Dart Container Corporation/Solo Cup and Herff Jones.



Established in 2005, the Wuerffel Trophy honors college football players who serve others, celebrate their impact, and inspire greater service in the world.  A member of the National College Football Awards Association, the Wuerffel Trophy is presented annually to the FBS player who best combines exemplary community service with leadership achievement on and off the field.  It is the first major award honoring the character of service to others.


The Wuerffel Trophy is named after Heisman Trophy winner, College Football Hall of Famer, former NFL quarterback, and renowned humanitarian Danny Wuerffel, whose life mission is to inspire greater service in the world. Wuerffel led the University of Florida to four SEC Championships and the Gators’ first National Football Championship as the team’s star quarterback. The 1996 Heisman Trophy winner set 17 NCAA and Florida records and won a myriad of other awards including the Maxwell Award, the Davey O’Brien Award, and The William V. Campbell Trophy, presented to the nation’s top scholar-athlete. As a nationally recognized humanitarian, Wuerffel inspires leaders to use their influence to make a positive impact.



Tom Brassell,


Shannon Donohue,


2021 Watch List (by AP University)

Thomas Hennigan, Appalachian State University, Senior, Wide Receiver

Jackson He, Arizona State University, Junior, Running Back

Andre Harris, Jr., Arkansas State University, Junior, Offensive Line

Nick Brahms, Auburn University, Senior, Offensive Line

Bryce Cosby, Ball State University, Senior, Defensive Back

Brandon Martin, Ball State University, Senior, Linebacker

Byron Hanspard, Jr., Baylor University, Junior, Defensive Back

Kekaula Kaniho, Boise State University, Senior, Defensive Back

James Empey, Brigham Young University, Junior, Offensive Line

Darien Rencher, Clemson University, Senior, Running Back

Kennedy Roberts, Coastal Carolina University, Junior, Defensive Line

A’Jon Vivens, Colorado State University, Junior, Running Back

Jake Bobo, Duke University, Senior, Wide Receiver/Special Teams

Holton Ahlers, East Carolina University, Senior, Quarterback

Tariq Speights, Eastern Michigan University, Senior, Linebacker

Camren McDonald, Florida State University, Junior, Tight End

Juanyeh Thomas, Georgia Institute of Technology, Junior, Defensive Back

Michael Ziemba, Indiana University, Senior, Linebacker

Brock Purdy, Iowa State University, Senior, Quarterback

Skylar Thompson, Kansas State University, Senior, Quarterback

Isaac Vance, Kent State University, Senior, Wide Receiver

Sam Allan, Kent State University, Senior, Offensive Line

Damone Clark, Louisiana State University, Senior, Linebacker

Joshua Mote, Louisiana Tech University, Junior, Offensive Line

Reeves Blankenship, Louisiana Tech University, Junior, Long Snapper

Alex Mollette, Marshall University, Senior, Offensive Line

Reed Blankenship, Middle Tennessee State University, Senior, Defensive Back

Austin Williams, Mississippi State University, Senior, Wide Receiver

Sage Doxtater, New Mexico State University, Senior, Offensive Line

Isaiah Moore, North Carolina State University, Senior, Linebacker

Joe Spivak, Northwestern University, Senior, Defensive Line

Ryan Hilinski, Northwestern University, Sophomore., Quarterback

Harry Miller, Ohio State University, Junior, Offensive Line

Jordan Young, Old Dominion University, Senior, Linebacker

Jaydon Grant, Oregon State University, Junior, Defensive Back

Sean Clifford, Pennsylvania State University, Senior, Quarterback

Ikenna Enechukwu, Rice University, Sophomore, Defensive Line

Tysyn Parker, San Jose State University, Senior, Linebacker

Shaine Hailey, Southern Methodist University, Senior, Linebacker

Isaiah Sanders, Stanford University, Senior, Quarterback

Kingsley Jonathan, Syracuse University, Senior, Defensive Line

Re-Al Mitchell, Temple University, Sophomore, Quarterback

Keldrick Carper, Texas A&M University, Senior, Defensive Back

Obinna Eze, Texas Christian University, Junior, Offensive Line

Tyler Vitt, Texas State University, Junior, Quarterback

Tony Bradford, Jr., Texas Tech University, Junior, Defensive Line

Luke Whittemore, Troy University, Junior, Wide Receiver

Nick Anderson, Tulane University, Junior, Linebacker

Bubba Arslanian, University of Akron, Junior, Linebacker

Chris Owens, University of Alabama, Senior, Offensive Line

Colby Ragland, University of Alabama at Birmingham, Senior, Offensive Line

Bryce Wolma, University of Arizona, Senior, Tight End

Jordan Silver, University of Arkansas, Senior, Long Snapper

Michael Saffell, University of California, Senior, Offensive Line

Nate Landman, University of Colorado, Senior, Linebacker

Brian Keating, University of Connecticut, Senior, Long Snapper

Zachary Carter, University of Florida, Senior, Defensive Line

Nakobe Dean, University of Georgia, Junior, Linebacker

Hekili Keliiliki, University of Hawai’i, Junior, Running Back/Linebacker

Marcus Jones, University of Houston, Senior, Defensive Back/Special Teams

Michael Marchese, University of Illinois, Senior, Tight End

Kaevon Merriweather, University of Iowa, Junior, Defensive Back

Kwamie Lassiter II, University of Kansas, Senior, Wide Receiver

Kenneth Horsey, University of Kentucky, Junior, Offensive Line

Levi Lewis, University of Louisiana, Senior, Quarterback

Brian Cobbs, University of Maryland, Senior, Wide Receiver

Preston Brady, University of Memphis, Senior, Long Snapper

Tanner Morgan, University of Minnesota, Senior, Quarterback

Mac Brown, University of Mississippi, Senior, Punter

Tyler Badie, University of Missouri, Senior, Running Back

Ben Stille, University of Nebraska, Senior, Defensive Line

Peter Agabe, University of North Carolina at Charlotte, Senior, Linebacker

Myron Tagovailoa-Amosa, University of Notre Dame, Senior, Defensive Line

Pat Fields, University of Oklahoma, Senior, Defensive Back

Cal Adomitis, University of Pittsburgh, Senior, Long Snapper

Deslin Alexandre, University of Pittsburgh, Senior, Defensive Line

Keith Gallmon, University of South Alabama, Junior, Defensive Back

Spencer Eason-Riddle, University of South Carolina, Senior, Linebacker

Matthew Butler, University of Tennessee, Senior, Defensive Line

Hunter Duplessis, University of Texas at San Antonio, Senior, Kicker

Bailey Flint, University of Toledo, Senior, Punter

Chris Paul, University of Tulsa, Senior, Offensive Line

Mika Tafua, University of Utah, Junior, Defensive Line

Race Porter, University of Washington, Senior, Punter

Faion Hicks, University of Wisconsin, Senior, Defensive Back

Calvin Tyler, Jr., Utah State University, Junior, Running Back

Elijah McAllister, Vanderbilt University, Senior, Linebacker

Brock Hoffman, Virginia Tech University, Junior, Offensive Line

Tyriq Hardimon, Wake Forest University, Junior, Defensive Back

Evan Staley, West Virginia University, Senior, Kicker

Jarret Doege, West Virginia University, Senior, Quarterback

Sean Mahone, West Virginia University, Senior, Defensive Back

Mike Caliendo, Western Michigan University, Senior, Offensive Line


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