Houston, TX (November 17, 2022) - The Rotary Lombardi Award®, in conjunction with the Rotary Club of Houston, is pleased to announce the 4 finalists who will compete for this year’s coveted award. The Rotary Lombardi Award® goes annually to the college football offensive or defensive lineman, who in addition to outstanding performance and ability, best exemplifies the character and discipline of NFL Hall of Fame Head Coach Vince Lombardi.
Will Anderson Jr. - Alabama, Jr Outside Linebacker
Alabama’s Will Anderson Jr. is on his way to rewriting record books in Alabama football. The reigning Bronko Nagurski Trophy winner ranks second on Alabama’s career sacks list with 31.5 and third in school history in tackles for loss with 58. Hailing from Hampton, Georgia, this former #1 ranked Weak Defensive End and five-star recruit has blossomed in his time at Alabama. This season, Anderson Jr. has had five games with a grade over 80% by PFF, two of which were over 88%. In only 550 snaps this year, he has been credited with 28 QB hurries and is tied for 9th in the nation with eight sacks. And for the first time in his career, Anderson Jr. got his hands on a live ball against Louisiana-Monroe, where he intercepted a pass and took it home for a touchdown.
Brock Bowers - Georgia, So Tight End
In recent memory, Brock Bowers might be the most dynamic player to play the Tight End position. This 6’4, two-hundred-and-thirty-pound tight end for Georgia, from his first series as a freshman last year, put the country on notice. This season in his over 500 snaps and ten starts, he has had multiple games over an 82% grade from PFF and a career-high of 92.9% rating from his performance at South Carolina. He has earned SEC Offensive Player of the Week twice in his play against South Carolina and Florida. Bowers was a First-team Pre-Season All-America selection by the Associated Press, the Walter Camp Football Foundation, Athlon Sports, and Phil Steele.
Jalen Carter - Georgia, Jr Defensive Tackle
Coming out of high school in Apopka, Florida, Jalen Carter was a five-star recruit by 247Sports. He is now a projected top five pick in the 2023 NFL Draft and a powerhouse on the Georgia defensive line. Carter is following his incredible 2021 campaign with another strong performance this season. In 2021 he played in all 15 games, finishing with 37 tackles and 33 QB pressures. This season he’s played in eight games with four starts, limited to only 172 snaps while battling an injury. This season he notched a career-high seven tackles in Georgia’s win at Mississippi State and two games with defensive grades over 90% on PFF against Tennessee and Mississippi State.
Tuli Tuipulotu - USC, Jr Defensive Tackle
USC’s junior defensive tackle, Tuli Tuipulotu, is playing lights out this season. He is an elite-level pass rusher with two Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Week honors and three Pac-12 Defensive Lineman of the Week awards. Tuipulotu has recorded 15 tackles, seven assists, and 11 sacks with 26 QB hurries this season. Last year in 2021, as a sophomore, Tuipulotu played in 12 games and took 630 snaps for the Trojans. He recorded 34 tackles and 14 assists while adding 24 stops. As a pass rusher, he chalked up 29 total pressures, 17 QB hurries, 6 QB hits, and six sacks during the year. He is currently first in the country through week 11 with 11.5 sacks and has two games with a grade over 88%, according to PFF this season.
The third round of voting for the four finalists will commence on November 18th. The winner will be announced at the live event in Houston, Texas on December 7th, where 1998 Winner Dat Nguyen will serve as guest speaker.
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