Penn State Nittany Lions senior right guard John Urschel was declared the winner of the 2013 William V. Campbell Trophy on Tuesday night. The award, known colloquially as the “Academic Heisman,” is given annually to the player who is “the absolute best in the country for his academic success, football performance and exemplary community leadership.”
Urschel, who has a 4.0 grade point average and is working on his second master’s degree, thanked both his school and the rival finalists in his acceptance speech (transcribed by Penn Live):
I would like to thank Penn State for wasting their second to last scholarship in the class of 2009 on an unheralded, two star, 260-pound offensive lineman from Buffalo, New York. I’m so grateful for that scholarship, grateful to play in front of 108,000 of the best fans in college football every Saturday and grateful to earn both a bachelors and master’s degree in the process.
I’d like to thank my fellow finalists who have continued the tradition of showing that the pairing of academics and athletics is not just reasonable but necessary. They show that the characteristics of discipline, dedication, competition and integrity are not just applicable to one component of our lives but rather transcend the boundaries between the football field, the classroom and the community.
According to USA Today, Urschel has already published multiple research papers, including one titled “A Space-Time Multigrid Method for the Numerical Valuation of Barrier Options.” Oh, and he’s all been selected as a first-team All-Big Ten member twice. Whether on or off the gridiron, it looks like Urschel has a bright future ahead of him, and we salute him for his accomplishments.
[Source: Penn Live]