Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Tusculum's Bo Cordell named National Finalist for Harlon Hill Trophy

FLORENCE, Ala. --- The field of 24 candidates has been trimmed to nine national finalists and Tusculum College quarterback Bo Cordell is amongst them, following regional voting for the Harlon Hill Trophy as the NCAA Division II College Football Player of the Year.

The finalists were selected by the NCAA Division II sports information directors in regional voting and will now be placed on the national ballot where all 148 of the division's SIDs will select the award's 25th winner. The top two players from each of Division II's Super Regions advance to the national ballot, but three players advanced from Region 4 due to a tie in the voting.

The list of national finalists includes: Bo Cordell (QB, Tusculum), Zach Amedro (QB, West Liberty State), Franklyn Quiteh (RB, Bloomsburg), Nick Hardesty (QB, Henderson State), Clay Garcia (QB, Colorado School of Mines), Phil Mibrath (RB, Michigan Tech), Blake Bolles (QB, Northwest Missouri State), Eric Czerniewski (Central Missouri), and Mitchell Gale (QB, Abilene Christian).

National voting will conclude on December 3rd and the top three finalists will be invited to Florence, Ala. for the presentation banquet.  The winner of the 2010 award, which is presented by the National Harlon Hill Award Committee, will be announced at the 25th annual Harlon Hill Trophy Presentation Banquet on Friday, December 17 at the Florence Conference Center.  This year’s Hill Trophy Banquet will also include the 12th induction ceremonies of the Division II Football Hall of Fame.
Cordell, a 6-1, 195-pound sophomore from Cincinnati, Ohio, has recorded one of the finest passing performances in NCAA history.  The 2010 South Atlantic Conference Offensive Player of the Year passed for a school and SAC record 4,657 yards, which are the most by any quarterback in the country (NCAA – all divisions).  His passing yardage tally is also the third highest in NCAA II history.  Cordell threw for 38 touchdowns, a new school and league single-season mark and the 19th most in NCAA II history.  He has also established school and SAC records with 394 completions (2nd in NCAA II history), 605 pass attempts (2nd in NCAA II history) and 702 total offensive attempts (2nd in NCAA II history).

In 2010, Cordell averaged 425.45 total offensive yards per game, which is currently the best in NCAA II.  He passed for over 400 yards in nine consecutive games this season, which is a new TC, SAC and NCAA II record.  He also leads the nation in completions per game (35.82 cpg) and points responsible for per game (26.00 ppg).  Cordell has been named SAC Offensive Player of the Week four times this year and twice honored as national offensive player of the week by D2football.com and D2 Sports Insider.

Cordell also became on the second player in league history to be named SAC Offensive Freshman of the Year and followed the next season with SAC Player of the Year accolades.  The only other time was Presbyterian College signal caller Todd Cunningham, who was the 1998 Freshman of the Year and followed with three-straight SAC Player of Year titles (1999, 2000, 2001).

For his young 21-game career, he is already second in school history with 8,115 passing yards and 61 touchdowns (6th in SAC history for both).  His 386.4 career passing yards per game average is on pace to be a new NCAA II record.

Cordell joins former All-America cornerback Ricardo Colclough and All-America quarterback Corey Russell as the only three Tusculum players to advance to the Harlon Hill Trophy national ballot.  Colclough finished fifth in the national voting in 2003, while Russell placed sixth on the 2008 final ballot.

This marks only the sixth time that South Atlantic Conference player has been named as a national finalist for the Harlon Hill Trophy.  Carson-Newman running back Tyrone Westmoreland was a finalist for the award in 1997, while Presbyterian quarterback Todd Cunningham was amongst the final eight in 1999 and again in 2001.  C-N signal caller Leonard Guyton was a finalist in 2002, followed by Colclough (2003) and Russell (2008) from Tusculum.

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