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Marshall’s Williams in line for award

Staff Report

 

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — Marshall punter Tyler Williams was named a semifinalist for the Burlsworth Trophy, the award’s committee and Springdale Rotary Club announced Tuesday.

The award is given annually to the most outstanding football player in America who began his career as a walk-on.

The Fort Wayne, Ind., resident currently has a 43.9-yard average over his three-plus seasons.

The school record of 43.4 belongs to Pat Velarde (1982-83). And only 68 of Williams’ 197 career punts have been returned, or 1 for every 2.9 kicks.

In three-plus seasons, Williams has had 58 punts of 50 or more yards, including 12 of 60-plus. He has placed 66 inside the 20, with only 22 touchbacks.

Williams has been especially clutch in 2015, as he is second nationally with 25 kicks that have been downed inside the 20. Williams’ 2,752 punting yards rank sixth nationally and his 62 punts are tied for ninth.

Fans will be allowed to vote for their favorite player via the “GREATER” Fan Vote beginning today.

Fans are limited to one vote per day, and the voting for the semi-finalist round will conclude on Sunday at midnight CST. Voting can be accessed at www.burlsworthtrophy.com<http://www.burlsworthtrophy.com/> and will begin with the top 10 semi-finalists and continue as the selection committee announces the top three Burlsworth Trophy finalists next Tuesday.

Finalists will be honored and the winner of the 2015 Burlsworth Trophy announced Dec. 7 at a banquet in Springdale, Ark., sponsored by the Springdale Rotary Club.

The trophy is named in honor of Brandon Burlsworth. Without one D1 scholarship offer, Brandon walked on to the Razorback team in 1994, worked his way to being 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 “GREATER” Fan Vote counts as 5 percent during each round of voting, and it is combined with the results from the Selection Committee.

Fans can cast their vote for the nation’s most outstanding player who began his career as a walk-on once per day. Fan Vote totals are cleared after each round.

For more information about the Burlsworth Trophy, visit www.burlsworthtrophy.com<http://www.burlsworthtrophy.com/>.