Texas Longhorns quarterback Sam Ehlinger added yet another credential to his already decorated career on Tuesday night, taking home the Jason Witten Collegiate Man of the Year award.
Ehlingher was one of three finalists for the award, along with Alabama runningback Najee Harris, and Notre Dame defensive lineman Daelin Hayes.
“I was very surprised,” Ehlinger said. “Growing up and seeing (Jason) on TV, it was crazy to see him in person, and I was taken aback and surprised and just honored. It was an incredible experience just to receive the trophy and be in his presence, honestly.
The award is given to the college football player who shows the best leadership in his program, both on and off the field.
As the winner of the award, Ehlinger will also receive a $10,000 contribution in his name to the University of Texas' athletic scholarship fund. The contribution will be made by Jason Witten’s official charity, the SCORE Foundation.
“It’s incredible, growing up, especially living in Texas, watching the Cowboys and watching Jason play," Ehlinger said. My parents were always like, ‘That’s who you need to model yourself off of on the field and off the field because he does it right in all the ways.’ He has all the glory, everybody loves him, but what’s most important is the man that he is off the field – his faith, his family, the way he carries himself as a man with high class. That means so much to be able to represent this award with his name associated to it. It’s truly an honor, and I feel so blessed.”
The first winner of the award was UCF’s Shaquem Griffin, followed by Wisconsin’s D’Cota Dixon in 2018, and Tennessee’s Trey Smith in 2019.
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