We are ramping up for all of the college football postseason chaos that everyone loves... trophy time. One of the first awards announced is one of the least known — although I think it needs a ton more press because it’s awesome.
The Burlsworth Trophy
The Trophy is named in honor of Brandon Burlsworth. Without any Division 1 scholarship offer, Brandon walked on to the Razorback football team in 1994, worked his way to becoming a three-year starter, and was eventually named an All-American in 1998. Burlsworth was selected as the 63rd overall pick by the Indianapolis Colts in the 1999 NFL draft, but was tragically killed in a car accident 11 days later. The Burlsworth Foundation was created in his memory and supports the physical and spiritual needs of children, in particular those children that have limited opportunities.
The Burlsworth Trophy is awarded to the most outstanding football player in America who began his career as a walk-on.
This year, the Burlsworth Trophy went to 9th year senior WR (feels like it) Hunter Renfrow from the Clemson Tigers.
Congratulations @ClemsonFB Hunter Renfrow, 2018 Burlsworth Trophy winner! @renfrowhunter pic.twitter.com/Ur79gHgajN— Burlsworth Trophy (@BurlsworthTrust) December 3, 2018
Notre Dame’s Chris Finke is of a similar mold as Renfrow, except Finke didn’t advance to the semifinalist (or finalist) list after initially appearing as a nominee in October. Finke didn’t advance despite, as Blue & Gold’s Bryan Driskell pointed out, having better stats than Renfrow (and playing in the same college football playoff game with undefeated records).
Renfrow has had an outstanding career, no question. Some numbers to chew on.— Bryan Driskell (@BGI_CoachD) December 3, 2018
Renfrow in 2018 - 43 receptions, 472 yards, 1 TD
Chris Finke in 2018 - 47 receptions, 547 yards, 2 TD - Ranked 22nd nationally in punt return average.
Also began his career as a walk on. https://t.co/einq0qgm5Q
Well played Clemson. See you in the Cotton Bowl.