Tuiasosopo Named Flaherty Winner at Awards Banquet

Nov. 22, 2004

SEATTLE ­ Husky senior fullback Zach Tuiasosopo, who missed most of his senior year after breaking a leg, took top honors at the Washington football team¹s annual awards banquet when he was named the winner of the Guy Flaherty Most Inspirational Award. The annual banquet was held Monday evening at the Seattle Sheraton.

Tuiasosopo, one of five team captains played in the season¹s first three games, breaking his leg in the Huskies¹ game at Notre Dame on Sept. 25. The Flaherty Award is Washington's oldest (since 1908) and most prestigious individual award..

Junior linebacker Joe Lobendahn and senior defensive lineman Manase Hopoi shared the team MVP Defense award. Hopoi leads the Pac-10 with 22 tackles for loss, one short of the school record, and is fourth in the conference with nine sacks. Lobendahn, a captain, was second on the team with 100 tackles. His 10 tackles per game is third in the Pac-10.

Sophomore tailback Kenny James, the Huskies¹ leading rusher wit h 702 yards and leading scorer with 30 points, was named the offensive MVP.

Washington's MVP awards are voted on by members of the team.

Lobendahn also won the Sports Radio 950 KRJ Most Outstanding Player Award for the defensive while junior center Brad Vanneman took home that trophy for the offense. Sophomore punter Sean Douglas and senior long snapper/linebacker Tim Galloway shared the Special Teams Most Outstanding Player Award.

Hopoi and Vanneman won additional awards presented to the team¹s top linemen. Hopoi was the winner of the L. Wait Rising Lineman of the Year Award and the John P. Angel Outstanding Defensive Lineman award while Vanneman was named the the John P. Angel Outstanding Offensive Lineman. Junior linebacker Evan Benjamin and manager Brian Gray were presented with the Earle Glant Tough Husky Award while Lobendahn and Benjamin shared the Chuck Niemi Big Hit Award.

KING-TV¹s Most Improved Awards were presented to junior tight end Joe Toledo on offense while sophomore linebacker Scott White took the Most Improved honor on defense. The Travis Spring Outstanding Freshmen Awards winners wide receiver Bobby Whithorne on offense and defensive tackle Jordan White-Frisbee on defense. Husky Fever 12th Man Awards were presented to junior fullback James Sims on offense and freshman defensive end Greyson Gunheim on defense.

Walkon wide receiver Matthew Smith picked up the Tyee Sports Council Community Service Award, presented to the student-athlete who excels on the field and volunteers extensively in the community. Senior safety Jimmy Newell won the Academic Excellence Award while junior defensive end Ty Eriks won the 101 Club Academic Achievement Award.

The Bob Jarvis Offensive Scout Squad Player of the Year went to sophomore quarterback Felix Sweetman while senior defensive lineman Will Murphy was announced as the Mark Drennan Defensive Scout Squad Player of the Year. The Brian Stapp Special Teams Scout Squad Players of the Year Award went to Smith, a sophomore from Spanaway.

The Kurt Gegner Memorial Award was presented to Ryan Shinkawa, a student assistant on the Husky equipment staff, Josh Ben, a student trainer, and Nick Irving, a student on the team¹s video staff.

2004 Washington Football Awards

Guy Flaherty Most Inspirational
Zach Tuiasosopo

Team MVP Award
Kenny James (Offense)
Manase Hopoi & Joe Lobendahn (Defense)

Sports Radio 950 KJR Players of the Year
Brad Vanneman (Offense)
Joe Lobendahn (Defense)
Sean Douglas & Tim Galloway (Special Teams)

KING-TV Most Improved Player
Joe Toledo (Offense)
Scott White (Defense)

John P. Angel Lineman of the Year
Brad Vanneman (Offense)
Manase Hopoi (Defense)

L. Wait Rising Lineman of the Year
Manase Hopoi

101 Club Academic Award
Ty Eriks

Earle T. Glant Tough Husky
Evan Benjamin & Brian Gray

Chuck Niemi Big Hit Award
Evan Benjamin & Joe Lobendahn

Tyee Sports Council Community Service Award
Matthew Smith

Bob Jarvis Offensive Scout Squad MVP
Felix Sweetman

Mark Drennan Defensive Scout Squad MVP
Will Murphy

Brian Stapp Special Teams Scout Squad MVP
Matthew Smith

Travis Spring Most Outstanding Freshman
Bobby Whithorne (Offense)
Jordan White-Frisbee (Defense

Husky Fever 12th Man Award
James Sims (Offense)
Greyson Gunheim (Defense

Academic Excellence Award
Jimmy Newell

Kurt P. Gegner Memorial Award
Ryan Shinkawa (Equipment Room Staff)
Josh Ben (Athletic Training Staff)
Nick Irving (Video Staff)