Ed Szczepanski-US PRESSWIRE
The award is given to the nation's best player who started their career as a walk-on.
Without any Division I scholarship offers in hand, Kevin Ozier joined the Arizona State Sun Devils football team as a walk-on in 2009. After redshirting a season, he slowly moved up the depth chart from scout team to appearing in all 13 games in the 2011 season. This season, Ozier has 17 receptions for 246 yards and five touchdowns and because of his rise through the ranks, he's been nominated for the Burlsworth Trophy.
Ozier is in his first season on scholarship at ASU. In order to stay on the team, he worked multiple jobs and at one point even slept in his car so he could afford school. Ten semifinalists for the award will be announced on Nov. 20 with and then it will be narrowed down to three finalists on Nov. 27. The award will be given out on Dec. 3 at a ceremony in Springdale, Arkansas.
The trophy is awarded by the Springdale Rotary Club and named after former Arkansas Razorbacks offensive lineman Brandon Burlsworth who walked on to the team in 1994 was eventually named an All-American. Burlsworth was drafted 63rd overall by the Indianapolis Colts in 1999 but died in a car accident just 11 days later.