Feckley Named A Semifinalist for William V. Campbell Trophy®

Sep 27, 2017


IRVING, Texas (Sept. 27, 2017) – Recognizing one of the most impressive groups of scholar-athletes in the history of college football, The National Football Foundation & College Hall of Fame (NFF) proudly announced today the 181 semifinalists for the 2017 William V. Campbell Trophy®, presented by Fidelity Investments®. The award recognizes an individual as the absolute best football scholar-athlete in the nation.

The University of Dubuque’s Conor Feckley (QB, Sr., Anchorage, Alaska) was among the 2017 class of semifinalists. Feckley a 1st Team All-Iowa Conference and Academic All-Iowa Conference performer, re-wrote the record books in the 2016 season opener after completing 31-47 passes for 634 yards and eight touchdowns. Feckley joined a list of four other Spartans to have been named a semifinalist, including one finalist.

UD’s Michael Zweifel was a finalist for the William V. Campbell Trophy® in 2011, Wyatt Hanus was a semifinalist in 2012, Tyson Carter was a semifinalist in 2013, Blaine Snitker was a semifinalist in 2015, and Conor Feckley in 2017 for the Spartans football team.

The NFF will announce 12-14 finalists on Nov. 1, and each of them will receive an $18,000 postgraduate scholarship as a member of the NFF National Scholar-Athlete Class, presented by Fidelity Investments. The finalists will travel to New York City for the 60th NFF Annual Awards Dinner on Dec. 5, where their accomplishments will be highlighted in front of one of the most powerful audiences in all of sports. Live during the event, one member of the class will be declared as the winner of the 28th William V. Campbell Trophy® and have his postgraduate scholarship increased to $25,000.

“These 181 impressive candidates truly represent the scholar-athlete ideal,” said NFF Chairman Archie Manning whose sons Peyton (Campbell Trophy® winner) and Eli were named NFF National Scholar-Athletes in 1997 and 2003, respectively. “It is important for us to showcase their success on the football field, in the classroom and in the community. This year’s semifinalists further illustrate the power of our great sport in developing the next generation of influential leaders.”

Named in honor of the late Bill Campbell, former chairman of Intuit, former player and head coach at Columbia University and the 2004 recipient of the NFF’s Gold Medal, the Campbell Trophy® is a 25-pound bronze trophy and increases the amount of the recipient’s grant by $7,000 for a total postgraduate scholarship of $25,000, which is endowed by HealthSouth. This year’s postgraduate scholarships will push the program’s all-time distribution to more than $11.3 million. Since 2013, the Campbell Trophy® has been prominently displayed inside its official home at the New York Athletic Club.

“The NFF would like to personally congratulate each of the nominees as well as their schools and coaches on their tremendous accomplishments,” said NFF President & CEO Steve Hatchell. “We are extremely proud to highlight each semifinalist’s achievements, showcasing their ability to balance academics and athletics at the highest level. The NFF Awards Committee will have an incredibly difficult task in selecting the finalists from this outstanding group of candidates.”

Nominated by their schools, which are limited to one nominee each, 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.


·      59th Year of the NFF National Scholar-Athlete Program

·      181 Nominations

·      3.59 Average GPA

·      Nominees with a perfect 4.0 GPA

·      40 Nominees with a 3.8 GPA or better

·      60 Nominees with a 3.7 GPA or Better

·      27 Academic All-America Selections

·      114 Captains

·      76 All-Conference Picks

·      19 All-Americans

·      10 Members of the 2017 AFCA Good Works Team

·      71 Nominees from the NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS)

·      37 Nominees from the NCAA Football Championship Subdivision (FCS)

·      30 Nominees from NCAA Division II

·      33 Nominees from NCAA Division III

·      10 Nominees from the NAIA

·      102 Offensive Players

·      67 Defensive Players

·      12 Special Teams Players


Launched in 1959, the NFF National Scholar-Athlete Awards program became the first initiative in history to award postgraduate scholarships based on both a player’s academic and athletic accomplishments, and it has recognized 828 outstanding individuals since its inception. The Campbell Trophy®, first awarded in 1990, adds to the program’s prestige, having previously honored two Rhodes Scholars, a Rhodes Scholar finalist, two Heisman Trophy winners and five first-round NFL draft picks.

In 2011, the NFF and Fidelity Investments launched a multi-year initiative between the two organizations to celebrate the scholar-athlete ideal and a joint commitment to higher education. As part of the initiative, Fidelity became the first presenting sponsor of the NFF National Scholar-Athlete Awards program. In 2014, Fidelity became the presenting sponsor of the Campbell Trophy®.

Fidelity also helped launch the NFF Faculty Salutes, which recognize the contributions of the faculty athletics representatives at each of the institutions with an NFF National Scholar-Athlete. As part of the initiative, the NFF presents each of the faculty representatives with a plaque, and Fidelity donates $5,000 for the academic support services at each school with a total of $440,000 distributed from 2011-16.

Division III

Alma (Mich.) – Lars Murray
Bethel (Minn.) – Josh Dalki
Carnegie Mellon (Pa.) – Sam Benger
Case Western Reserve (Ohio) – Cody Calhoun
Central (Iowa) – Sam Markham
Chicago (Ill.) – Chandler Carroll
Dubuque (Iowa) – Conor Feckley
East Texas Baptist – Ty Parsons
Franklin & Marshall (Pa.) – Zachary Bradley
Frostburg State (Md.) – Raheem Ramsey
Gallaudet (D.C.) – Devaron Scott
Grinnell (Iowa) – Tony Bergida
Hardin-Simmons (Texas) – Matthew Hawkins
Hope (Mich.) – Brandon Ellsworth
Illinois College – Jacob Homann
Kenyon (Ohio) – Brandon Byrd
Lake Forest (Ill.) – Thomas Steen
Lycoming (Pa.) – Mike Ward
Maine Maritime – Cody O’Brien
Manchester (Ind.) – Eric Beard
Monmouth (Ill.) – Kyle Schultz
Mount Union (Ohio) – Matt Fitchet
Ohio Wesleyan – Richard Spernoga
Redlands (Calif.) – Mitch Kidd
Rhodes (Tenn.) – Blake Jacobs
Saint John’s (Minn.) – David Franta
St. Thomas (Minn.) – Isaac Seering
Washington & Jefferson (Pa.) – Jesse Zubik
Wisconsin-Oshkosh – Brett Kasper
Wisconsin-Stevens Point – Blake Lehman
Wisconsin-Stout – Jared Allen
Wisconsin-Whitewater – Tony Gumina
Wooster (Ohio) – Patrick Mohorcic

Fidelity’s mission is to inspire better futures and deliver better outcomes for the customers and businesses we serve. With assets under administration of $6.4 trillion, including managed assets of $2.3 trillion as of August 31, 2017, we focus on meeting the unique needs of a diverse set of customers: helping more than 26 million people invest their own life savings, 23,000 businesses manage employee benefit programs, as well as providing more than 12,500 financial advisory firms with investment and technology solutions to invest their own clients’ money. Privately held for 70 years, Fidelity employs more than 40,000 associates who are focused on the long-term success of our customers. For more information about Fidelity Investments, visit https://www.fidelity.com/about.

Founded in 1947 with early leadership from General Douglas MacArthur, legendary Army coach Earl "Red" Blaik and immortal journalist Grantland Rice, The National Football Foundation & College Hall of Fame is a non-profit educational organization that runs programs designed to use the power of amateur football in developing scholarship, citizenship and athletic achievement in young people. With 120 chapters and 12,000 members nationwide, NFF programs include FootballMatters.org, the College Football Hall of Fame in Atlanta, The William V. Campbell Trophy®
 presented by Fidelity Investments, annual scholarships of more than $1.3 million and a series of initiatives to honor the legends of the past and inspire the leaders of the future. NFF corporate partners include Delta Air Lines, Fidelity Investments, Herff Jones, New York Athletic Club, Pasadena Tournament of Roses, PrimeSport, the Sports Business Journal, Under Armour and VICIS. Learn more at www.footballfoundation.org.

The William V. Campbell Trophy®
 is a member of the National College Football Awards Association (NCFAA), which encompasses college football's most prestigious awards. Founded in 1997, the NCFAA and its 23 awards now boast over 800 recipients, dating to 1935. Visit ncfaa.org to learn more about our story.