Urschel a finalist for another big award

STATE COLLEGE, Pa. -- John Urschel might need a new trophy mantle after this offseason.

The Penn State offensive lineman was announced Friday as a finalist for yet another honor, this time the AAU Sullivan Award, which goes to the nation's top amateur athlete and is billed as the "Oscar of sports awards." Urschel previously earned the William V. Campbell Trophy, which is known as the "academic Heisman."

The winner of the Sullivan Award will be announced April 11, the day before the Blue-White Game, during a banquet in Orlando, Fla.

Urschel is the only football player still in the mix for the award, which honors the athlete who "demonstrates the qualities of leadership, character, sportsmanship and the ideals of amateurism." The other two finalists include Florida's Cory Ann McGee (track and field) and Nebraska's Kelsey Robinson (volleyball).

The offensive guard is in pretty elite company already, but if he wins he would join a very small class of players to win both the Campbell and Sullivan awards. Only three others have claimed both trophies: Peyton Manning (Tennessee, 1997), Tim Tebow (Florida, 2007) and Andrew Rodriguez (Army, 2011).

Urschel finished his senior season with a perfect 4.0 GPA, published several academic papers and even taught a class to fellow Penn State students. On the gridiron, he earned All-Big Ten honors, and The Associated Press named him a third-team All-American. He was a recipient of the Big Ten Medal of Honor and was also the keynote speaker at Chicago's Big Ten luncheon.