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Area players named semifinalists for NCAA football's top scholar-athlete honor

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Posted at 4:00 PM, Oct 01, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-01 16:00:38-04

IRVING, Texas - Norfolk State wide receiver Marcque Ellington and Old Dominion University linebacker Jordan Young are among 199 semifinalists for the 2020 National Football Foundation William V. Campbell Trophy Presented by Mazda. The Campbell Award recognizes an individual as the absolute best football scholar-athlete in the nation for his combined academic success, football performance and exemplary leadership.

Ellington is one of just two semifinalists from the MEAC, one of 45 from the Division I FCS level, and one of 199 across all levels of NCAA football. This is the second consecutive year NSU has had a semifinalist for the Campbell Trophy, following defensive lineman Ricky Thomas Jr. in 2019. In his fifth year at NSU, Ellington started 11 of the Spartans' 12 games last year and finished with 25 receptions for 302 yards. He caught two touchdown passes for the year and hauled in at least one pass in 10 games. Academically, Ellington earned his bachelor's degree in in business marketing in three and a half years, graduating cum laude in December 2019. He is currently enrolled in NSU's cybersecurity graduate school program.

Young is fourth in ODU history with 246 career tackles and has started 35 of a possible 36 games in his career. In 2019, Young started all 12 games for the second time in his career and notched a career-best 86 tackles and his first career interception. As a sophomore in 2018, he started 11 games and finished with 75 tackles. In his rookie campaign in 2017, he was named to the C-USA all-freshman team, making 85 tackles with six tackles for loss.

Off the field, Young graduated with a degree in sport management with a 3.4 GPA. He is currently taking classes in ODU's sport management Master's program.

The NFF will announce 12-to-14 finalists in November, and each of them will receive an $18,000 postgraduate scholarship as a member of the 2020 NFF National Scholar-Athlete Class Presented by Fidelity Investments. Later this year, one member of the class will be declared as the winner of the 31st Campbell Trophy® Presented by Mazda, having his postgraduate scholarship increased to $25,000 and receiving his own 25-pound-bronze version of the iconic statue.

The award is named in honor of the late Bill Campbell, former chairman of Intuit, former player and head coach at Columbia University and the 2004 recipient of the NFF's Gold Medal.