Allstate Insurance Company and the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) announced on Tuesday its 2014 Allstate AFCA Good Works Team. This prestigious college football award pays tribute to a select group of student-athletes who have worked to positively impact the lives of others. Only 22 football players in the nation were selected to this year's team. Included among the exclusive group was Wyoming senior wide receiver Dominic Rufran from Colorado Springs, Colo.
The 22 players honored with this distinct recognition have not only dedicated their time to succeeding on the field, but have made a commitment to enriching the lives of others while contributing to the greater good of their communities.
Among Rufran's community service involvement has been: work with Big Brothers Big Sisters, two trips to Haiti with the Wyoming Football team to help in rebuilding efforts following the devastating 2010 earthquake, Fellowship of Christian Athlete events and Reading With the Pokes' events.
Rufran was among a record high 182 players nominated for this year's Allstate AFCA Good Works Team. A voting panel comprised of former Allstate AFCA Good Works Team® members and college football media reviewed the nominees in an effort to select 11 players from the NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision and 11 players from the NCAA Football Championship Subdivision, Divisions II, III and the NAIA to comprise the 22-player team.
"Allstate takes an immense amount of pride in working with the AFCA to recognize these student-athletes for their good works that have made a positive impact on communities across the country and, in some cases, across the world," said Jim Haskins, president of Allstate's West Territory and a member of the 2014 Allstate AFCA Good Works Team® voting panel. "Allstate is a proud supporter of NCAA football and it is an honor to award these young men for inspiring us all with their character and work ethic both on and off the field."
For the past 23 years, this award has recognized countless outstanding acts of service, and the accomplishments of this team are no exception. From creating non-profit organizations and programs to help those in need, to earning a Bronze Star from serving two tours of military duty in Iraq, the 22 players selected have done remarkable things in their communities and touched many people's lives.
"The Allstate AFCA Good Works Team® has been highlighting student-athlete volunteerism for 23 years, and the list of honorees keeps getting better each year," Grant Teaff, AFCA Executive Director said. "The 2014 Good Works Team® members are some of the most dedicated athletes, on and off the field, I have ever seen. It is the AFCA's pleasure to work with Allstate in promoting such great ambassadors of the game of football."
Allstate and the AFCA are looking to the fans to help determine this year's 2014 Allstate AFCA Good Works Team® Captain. By visiting ESPN.com/Allstate, fans can learn more about this year's team members and vote for the player who they feel best embodies the spirit of the Allstate AFCA Good Works Team®.
The Team Captain and his fellow award recipients will also be invited to New Orleans to take part in a community project leading up to the 2015 College Football Playoff Semifinal at the Allstate® Sugar Bowl®.
The 2014 Allstate AFCA Good Works Team® voting panel includes: former Good Works Team® members Zaid Abdul-Aleem (Duke, 1994 team), Matt Stinchcomb (Georgia, 1997, 1998 teams), Brian Brenberg (St. Thomas, 2001 team), Mike Proman (Amherst, 2002 team); media members Lou Holtz (ESPN), Kirk Herbstreit (ESPN), Bruce Feldman (Fox Sports), Blair Kerkhoff (Kansas City Star); current AFCA President and Ithaca College head coach Mike Welch; 1987 AFCA President and former head coach at Brigham Young University LaVell Edwards; and Jim Haskins, president of Allstate's West Territory.
The following players have been selected to the 2014 Allstate AFCA Good Works Team®:
NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision (I-A)
Name - Cl. - Pos.- School - Hometown
Jeffrey Coprich - So. - RB - California - Watts, Calif.
Laken Tomlinson - Sr. - OL - Duke - Chicago, Ill.
Chris Conley - Sr. - WR - Georgia - Dallas, Ga.
Max Godby - Sr. - OL - Kentucky - Louisville, Ky.
Deterrian Shackelford - GS - QB - Ole Miss - Decatur, Ala.
Sam Rodgers - Sr. - LS - Syracuse - State College, Pa.
Nate Boyer - Sr. - LS - Texas - Dublin, Calif.
Brett Hundley - Jr. - QB - UCLA - Chandler, Ariz.
Chuckie Keeton - Sr. - QB - Utah State - Houston, Texas
Andrew East - Sr. - LS - Vanderbilt - Indianapolis, Ind.
Dominic Rufran - Sr. - WR - Wyoming - Colorado Springs, Colo.
NCAA Football Championship Subdivision (I-AA), Divisions II, III and NAIA)
Name - Cl. - Pos. - School - Hometown
Blake Padget - Sr. - OL - Alma - Westland, Mich.
Chris Tamasi - Jr. - LB - Amherst - Canton, Mass.
Joshua Perkins - Sr. - OL - Bethel - Iowa Falls, Iowa
Dan Casey - Sr. - LB - Davidson - Tega Cay, S.C.
Tyler Zeoli - Sr. - LB - Holy Cross - King of Prussia, Pa.
Ward Udinski - Sr. - QB - Juniata - Doylestown, Pa.
Spencer Knight - Sr. - RB - Ouachita Baptist - Arkadelphia, Ark.
Zach Zenner - Sr. - RB - South Dakota State - Eagan, Minn.
Phil Faccone - Sr. - LS - Wagner - Brick, N.J.
Eric Mapoles - Sr. - LB - Wingate - Snellville, Ga.
Ryan Gerts - Sr. - LB - Winona State - Bloomingdale, Ill.
The Allstate Corporation (NYSE: ALL) is the nation's largest publicly held personal lines insurer, protecting approximately 16 million households from life's uncertainties through its Allstate, Encompass, Esurance and Answer Financial brand names and Allstate Financial business segment. Allstate is widely known through the slogan "You're In Good Hands With Allstate®." The Allstate brand's network of small businesses offers auto, home, life and retirement products and services to customers in the United States and Canada. In 2013, The Allstate Foundation, Allstate, its employees and agency owners gave $29 million to support local communities. Allstate employees and agency owners donated 200,000 hours of service across the country.
About the Allstate AFCA Good Works Team®
The Allstate AFCA Good Works Teams® were established in 1992 by the College Football Association, recognizing the extra efforts made by college football players and student support staff off the field. AFCA became the governing body of the award in 1997 and continues to honor college football players who go the extra mile for those in need. Allstate worked to present the award starting with the 2008 season.
With Chris Conley's selection in 2014, Georgia moves into first place with 15 honorees to the Allstate AFCA Good Works Team®. The Bulldogs are followed by Nebraska at 14 and St. Thomas (Minn.) with 13 honorees. The SEC leads all conferences with 62 selections to the Good Works Team® since it began in 1992. The SEC is followed by the Big 12 Conference with 42 selections and the Atlantic Coast Conference with 29 selections. Super Bowl XLII, XLVI and XLI champion quarterbacks Eli and Peyton Manning were members of the 2002 and 1997 Good Works Teams®, respectively.
The AFCA was founded in 1922 and currently has more than 11,000 members around the world ranging from the high school level to the professional ranks. According to its constitution, the AFCA was formed, in part, to "maintain the highest possible standards in football and in the coaching profession" and to "provide a forum for the discussion and study of all matters pertaining to football."