Vanderbilt Linebacker Hunter
Hillenmeyer Earns 2002 National Scholar-Athlete
Tenn. - The National Football Foundation and College Hall
of Fame announced today that it has selected Vanderbilts
Hunter Hillenmeyer as a National Scholar-Athlete
Hillenmeyer, a senior linebacker from Nashville, is one of
just six I-A football players to be honored. The award carries
an $18,000 post-graduate scholarship - the largest of its
kind -- and is presented to football players excelling in
all the areas of scholarship, citizenship and athletic performance.
On the field, Hillenmeyer leads the Southeastern Conference
with 97 total tackles, averaging 13.9 per game. In the classroom,
he holds 3.79 grade point average while earning a double major
in Economics and Human and Organizational Development.
I was not expecting to win, says a modest Hillenmeyer.
I thought it was a tremendous honor to even be nominated
for this award. I have worked very hard the last four years
and am very proud of this honor.
Hillenmeyer says he has been conditioned to strive for excellence.
My parents always told me that if you are going to do
something, give it your best effort, he says, so
I have tried to do my best in football and academics. I learned
excellent fundamentals at MBA (Montgomery Bell Academy, his
high school) and Vanderbilt has allowed me to develop in many
Hillenmeyer is just the fourth Commodore gridder to win this
prestigious award and the first since 1989 when another linebacker,
Andy McCarroll, was honored.
is a tremendous honor for Hunter and for our football program,
Vanderbilt Head Coach Bobby Johnson said. Hunter exemplifies
the best of college football on and off the field. We are
proud of his accomplishments.
Johnson and Director of Athletics Todd Turner will head a
Vanderbilt delegation to New York Citys Waldorf-Astoria
Hotel on December 10 for the National Football Foundation
and College Hall of Fames black tie Annual Awards Dinner
and Events. Included in this program is the induction of six
new members into the Football Hall of Fame.
Hillenmeyer has been a regular volunteer for the Special
Olympics and Boys and Girls Clubs of America.
Other I-A honorees include Bradie James, LSU; Jon Stinchcomb,
Georgia; Kliff Kingsbury; Texas Tech; Chris Kelsay, Nebraska;
and Kyle Eaton, Oklahoma State. There were eight other student-athletes
honored from Divisions I-AA, II, III and NAIA.