John Urschel has won his fair share of prestigious awards but Friday night he may have received his biggest honor as the recipient of the 84th AAU Sullivan Award.
Urschel was announced as the winner during an awards ceremony at the AAU National Headquarters in Orlando, Fla. Urschel was selected from a pool of 19 semifinalists and was joined by two other finalists, University of Florida track and field athlete Cory Ann McGee and University of Nebraska volleyball player Kelsey Robinson.
First presented in 1930, the Sullivan Award honors an athlete who demonstrates the qualities of leadership, character, sportsmanship, and the ideals of amateurism.
Urschel has taught college-level courses Integral Vector Calculus and Trigonometry and Analytic Geometry and has had several research papers published, including “Instabilities of the Sun-Jupiter-Asteroid Three Body Problem” in the journal Celestial Mechanics and Dynamic Astronomy and “A Space-Time Multigrid Method for the Numerical Valuation of Barrier Options” in the journal Communications in Mathematical Finance.
Urschel was also recently awarded the 2013 William V. Campbell Trophy from the National Football Foundation (NFF) as college football’s premier scholar-athlete.
Aside from his accomplishments in the classroom Urschel recently completed his workouts at the NFL Combine and will enter the NFL Draft. On the field Urschel was multi-year starter on Penn State’s offensive line.
Notable past Sullivan Award recipients from sports other than football include Bruce Jenner (track & field), Shawn Johnson (gymnastics), Jackie Joyner-Kersey (athletics), Michelle Kwan (figure skating), Jessica Long (paralympian), Greg Louganis (diving), Evan Lysacek (figure skating), Michael Phelps (swimming), Wilma Rudolph (athletics), and Mark Spitz (swimming).