AU's Richardson Wins Bobby Bowden Award

Auburn linebacker Ashton Richardson has been honored as a scholar-athlete.

New Orleans, La.--Ashton Richardson has been named the winner of the 2012 Bobby Bowden Award, presented annually by the Fellowship of Christian Athletes to the NCAA Division I Football Bowl Subdivision player who best epitomizes a student-athlete.

Richardson, who walked on at Auburn and earned a scholarship, wrapped up his career as a college linebacker and is planning to study veterinary medicine.

Richardson received the award on Friday evening. The other finalists were quarterback Matt Barkley of Southern California and defensive end John Simon of Ohio State.

"It's definitely humbling to receive this award, especially since it is named for a man like Coach Bobby Bowden," Richardson said. "Our campus and community pastors have been great mentors to me during my time at Auburn, and the Auburn family has always been supportive of me in my faith journey, as well as in academics and athletics. This is a tremendous honor."

Richardson was a finalist for a Rhodes Scholarship and graduated in December with a 3.95 grade point average. He was a three-time All-SEC Academic Team pick and a semi-finalist for the William Campbell Trophy presented by the National Football Foundation.

"The Bobby Bowden Award was created to honor a student-athlete who serves as a faith model on campus, in the classroom, in the community and on the football field," Auburn athletic director Jay Jacobs said.

"Ashton Richardson epitomizes everything this award was created to recognize," said Auburn director of athletics Jay Jacobs. "It is gratifying to see such a humble, deserving and truly outstanding young man be honored with such an important award."

Auburn football coach Gus Malzahn also had praise for Richardson. "Ashton is an outstanding individual and I think the world of him," Malzahn said. "He always stood out to me with his dedication and work ethic. You could tell he would be successful in life.

"Ashton is a positive role model to everyone he encounters and will continue to make a positive impact on society in his future endeavors," Malzahn added. "I'm very happy for Ashton to be receiving the Bobby Bowden Award. It couldn't be given to a better person. We're proud of the way he represents Auburn football and the Auburn family."

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