The award, which is presented by the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, honors Bowden, a hall of fame coach at Florida State. The winner will be announced on Jan. 4th in Miami.
Richardson, who walked on to the Auburn football team and earned a scholarship, was a finalist for a Rhodes Scholarship this year. He graduated this month with a 3.95 grade point average in equine studies and has plans to attend vet school.
A three-year letterman and a three-time SEC Academic Honor Roll selection, Richardson was a semi-finalist this year for the National Football Foundation's Campbell Trophy, which is presented to college football's top scholar-athlete.
In order to be nominated for the Bobby Bowden Award a player must conduct himself as a faith role model in the classroom, on the field, on the campus and in the community. Nominees must have at least a 3.0 grade point average and have the backing of their college's athletics director and head football coach.
Barkley is a four-year starter and won the 2012 Wuerffel Award. He carries a 3.2 GPA as a communications major. Simon is a four-year starter for the Buckeyes. He was on the watch list for the Lombardi, the Nagurski and the Bednarik awards. He has a 3.0 GPA in sports and leisure studies.