LAS VEGAS (UNLVRebels.com) – UNLV senior running back Charles Williams is one of 85 FBS semifinalists for the 2020 William V. Campbell Trophy presented by Mazda. The award goes annually to the nation’s top football scholar-athlete for his combined academic success, football performance and exemplary leadership.
The National Football Foundation & College Hall of Fame (NFF) released the list Thursday and will announce 12-to-14 finalists in November. Each of those finalists 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 the winner of the 31st Campbell Trophy® Presented by Mazda, having his postgraduate scholarship increased to $25,000.
Williams is a 2020 nominee for the Maxwell Award (top overall college player), the Doak Walker Award (top running back) and a member of the official Preseason All-Mountain West Team. The “Chuck Wagon” was just the fourth UNLV player to have won a conference regular-season rushing title, finishing with 1,257 yards and 11 touchdowns as a junior last fall. He heads into this season ranked seventh in school history with 2,445 yards and needs 555 more to become just the fourth Rebel to reach 3,000 yards on the ground.
Nominated by their respective sports information departments, 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.
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. Past recipients include 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.