LAS VEGAS, Nev. – The University of Arkansas nominated Dylan Breeding for the Fourth Annual College Football Rudy Awards, it was announced Wednesday by The Rudy Foundation.
A record 55 of the 120 Division I football programs submitted a nomination, and every Division I conference was represented for the Award, which honors student-athletes who demonstrate exemplary character, courage, contribution and commitment as members of their collegiate football teams. These same traits were immortalized in the blockbuster film "RUDY" in 27 seconds and against all odds on a gridiron in South Bend, Indiana, enabling Daniel "Rudy" Ruettiger to carve his name into college football lore.
Three Rudy Awards finalists will be chosen by the Selection Committee, as well as through fan voting, and honored at the Priority Payment Systems Awards Ceremony to be held in conjunction with the American Football Coaches Convention on Jan. 11, 2011, at the Hilton Anatole, in Dallas, Texas. Rudy Ruettiger will personally present the awards.
Each finalist will be presented with a classic finalist award and have an academic scholarship made in his name to the general scholarship fund of his college or university, as well as have travel expenses paid to the event. An overall winner will be chosen and presented with the top scholarship and bronze Rudy Award trophy.
Fans can review nominations and place their votes from December 1-13 for the most deserving player at www.CollegeRudyAwards.com.
Breeding, it was stated in the school’s nomination materials, is Arkansas’ starting punter. He went to Arkansas as a walk-on and was given the chance to compete for the punter job as a true freshman last season. He won the job and has been the Razorbacks’ punter for the past two seasons. This year, he has punted 45 times for an average of 42.4 yards per punt. Breeding is a tireless worker on and off the field, and his dedication is evident. He has been a valuable contributor to the team each of the last two seasons while compiling a 3.8 GPA in the classroom. He was also nominated for the inaugural Burlsworth trophy, which is being given annually to college football’s most outstanding player who began his career as a walk-on.
"We established this award as a special way to honor and recognize college football players for the size of their hearts instead of the enormity of their stats," said Rudy Ruettiger. "I am so excited to see how this award has grown into one of the top collegiate honors for kids who weren’t born with tremendous athletic talent, perhaps, but have overcome the odds and persevered because of their heart. The fact that we again had more than 40 percentof the Division I football programs submitting nominations, with every conference represented, speaks volumes about the importance of character, courage, contribution and commitment in sports and in our society."
The 2010 Award Selection Committee includes football coaches Barry Alvarez, David Bailiff, Gary Barnett, Fisher DeBerry, Dennis Franchione, June Jones, Chuck Knox, Gary Patterson, Buddy Pough, Jackie Sherrill and Dick Tomey, as well as former Washington Redskins Quarterback and Super Bowl MVP Doug Williams. Prominent businessman Peter Murphy, Jr., again serves as Chairman. Fan votes for the Rudy Awards also will contribute to the Selection Process. Finalists will be announced December 14 and listed on www.CollegeRudyAwards.com.