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Lentz Semi-Finalist for Academic Heisman

FROSTBURG, Md. — Frostburg State senior Chris Lentz (Ashburn, Va./Broad Run) is among the 184 semi-finalists for the 2005 Draddy Trophy, presented by HealthSouth, and is also a candidate for the National Football Foundation & College Hall of Fame (NFF) 2005 National Scholar-Athlete Award, the NFF announced Tuesday.

Known in many circles as the “Academic” Heisman, the Draddy Trophy continues to be one of college football’s most sought after and competitive awards, recognizing an individual as the absolute best in the country for his combined academic success, football performance and exemplary community leadership.

Lentz, a six-foot, 210-pound linebacker, has started every game for the Bobcats during his career. He earned second-team All-Atlantic Central Football Conference honors as a sophomore, and, as a junior, he took home All-ACFC honorable mention accolades while also being chosen the Frostburg State Male Student-Athlete of the Year.

This season, he is one of four team captains, ranks third on the squad with 36 tackles and also has two tackles for loss, one sack and one forced fumble.

Lentz is majoring in social science and owns a 3.651 cumulative grade point average. His community service activities have included full-time volunteering at a homeless shelter and soup kitchen and also speaking to middle school students for Big Brothers and Big Sisters.

Lentz will be joining the Army Airborne Rangers program after graduation and also has future plans to attend graduate school.

“Chris is an excellent example of what college athletics are all about,” said Bobcat head football coach Rubin Stevenson. “He has been outstanding on the football field, in the classroom and in the community throughout his career, and he is a fine representative of Frostburg State and our football program.”

“The Draddy epitomizes everything right about college football,” said NFF President Steven J. Hatchell. “By recognizing this group, we highlight the countless hours and demands that each college football player must balance as they pursue their dreams of a higher education and their passion for football. The NFF has both the privilege and responsibility to pay tribute to this exceptional group of role models, who truly embody the term student-athlete.”

Nominated by their schools, which are limited to one nominee each, semi-finalists must be a senior or graduate student in their final year of eligibility, have a GPA of at least 3.0 on a 4.0 scale, have outstanding football ability as a first team player, and have demonstrated strong leadership and citizenship.

Established to honor former NFF Chairman Vincent dePaul Draddy, a Manhattan College quarterback who founded the Izod and Lacoste brands, the award comes with a stunning 24-inch, 25-pound bronze trophy and a $25,000 post-graduate scholarship.

With a 3.5 average GPA and majors such as biomedical engineering, the group includes 106 players who have earned all-conference recognition on the field and 125 captains.

The offensive line produced the most nominees with 45. Linebackers came in second with 30 candidates. Offense outscored the defense with 88 to 80 hopefuls. The 16 special teams aspirants complete the contingent.

Nominees hail from all NCAA divisions and the NAIA: 63 from Division I-A; 44 from Division I-AA; 20 from Division II; 43 from Division III; and 14 from the NAIA.

The NFF Awards Committee, comprised of former coaches, Hall of Famers and college administrators, will select and announce 15 finalists on Oct. 27. The winner, also selected by the committee, will be announced at the 48th NFF Awards Dinner on December 6 at the Waldorf-Astoria in New York City.

Each finalist will also be recognized that night as part of the 2005 National Scholar-Athlete Class, receiving an $18,000 post-graduate scholarship.

For further information on this release, contact:

Office of Sports Information
Frostburg State University
101 Braddock Road
Frostburg, MD  21532-2303

Telephone: 301-687-4371
Fax: 301-687-4780