Colin Goodfellow Named Burlsworth Trophy Nominee

Colin Goodfellow Named Burlsworth Trophy Nominee

Graduate super senior and punter Colin Goodfellow has been named one of 81 FBS players nominated for the 2022 Burlsworth Trophy, given to the nation’s most outstanding player who began his career as a walk-on, it was announced Tuesday. 

Goodfellow excels in every facet of being a student-athlete. In the classroom, the Cleveland native graduated summa cum laude in May of 2021 with a nursing degree and is currently working on a second degree in kinesiology and health promotion. He was named a second-team College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA) Academic All-American in 2021 and is a four-time Southeastern Conference Fall Academic Honor Roll member (2018-21). He also is five-time member of the Dean’s List. 

Goodfellow has been very active in the community during his time as a Wildcat, most recently co-founding, along with teammate and kicker Matt Ruffolo, a fundraiser called “Kicks for Kids.” The duo created the fundraiser with a goal of raising $25K to donate to Kentucky Children’s Hospital’s Child Life Program in celebration of the Hospital’s 25th anniversary. The Child Life Program provides essential support and coping services for pediatric patients and their families who are seeking care at the hospital. The child life specialists incorporate play into a patient’s hospital stay to help the child understand a medical procedure on their level or take their mind off the difficult situations they are facing. “Kicks for Kids” launched in early September. 

He also has volunteered with God’s Pantry by picking up and delivering crates of food, has helped make blankets for Project Linus-Home, a non-profit organization which provides handmade blankets to children in need, and he has volunteered to help young nursing students work on their first aid skills.  

On the field, he emerged as one of the nation’s top punters in 2021, averaging 45.9 yards per kick, which ranked the second-highest average for a season in school history.  

This season, he is currently on the watch list for the Ray Guy Award, given to the nation’s top punter. In eight games, he has 27 punts for 1,108 yards, averaging 41.0 yards per punt, with four boots of more than 50 yards. 

In the award’s 13th year, the Trophy is named in honor of Brandon Burlsworth, former University of Arkansas Walk-On and All-American offensive lineman. Burlsworth’s life is also the subject of a major motion picture, “GREATER”, which was released in 2016. The Burlsworth Trophy is given to the most outstanding football player in American who began his career as a walk-on and has shown outstanding performance on the field. Each nominee must have begun his first season of participation with FBS (D1) football program without financial aid of any kind from his university’s athletic department. 

Without one D1 scholarship offer, Brandon Burlsworth walked on at the University of Arkansas in 1994. He became 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 who have limited opportunities. 

The Burlsworth Trophy award ceremony to honor the three finalists and to announce the 2022 winner will be held on December 5 at 7 p.m. CST at Crystal Bridges Museum in Bentonville, Arkansas. 

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