Former Buffs Named Hampshire Honor Society Members
BOULDER-Three former University of Colorado football players were named to the 2008 National Football Foundation Hampshire Honor Society Wednesday.
Placekicker Kevin Eberhart, tailback Byron Ellis and wide receiver Dusty Sprague, who were all seniors on CU's 2007 squad, were among 439 players from 226 schools to qualify for membership in the society's second year of existence.
Qualifications require a student-athlete to be a starter or significant substitute on a college football team, achieve a cumulate 3.2 grade point average throughout undergraduate studies and meet all NCAA-mandated progress towards degree requirements.
Eberhart, who earned his bachelor's degree in May 2007 in aerospace engineering, was CU's starting placekicker last season, connecting on 15-of-23 field goals and 38-of-39 PATs. He was an honorable mention All-Big 12 selection on the field and earned first team Academic All-Big 12 honors while taking classes like Aerospace Mathematics, Gas Turbine Propulsion, Lunar Module Design and Environmental Impact Assessment. He was also a semifinalist for the prestigious Draddy Trophy.
Eberhart will receive his master's degree in aerospace engineering this spring, and his goal is to someday work for NASA. He has worked on a lunar module project which falls within his interest of bioastronautics.
Ellis, who was Eberhart's roommate on road trips last season, was fourth on the team in rushing last season with 131 yards and two touchdowns on 32 carries. He also caught 12 passes for 39 yards and a score and emerged as CU's best pass-blocking back. An integrated physiology major on the pre-med track, Ellis was a first team Academic All-Big 12 selection with a 3.54 GPA. He also won the team's Dean Jacob Van Ek Award for academic excellence.
Head coach Dan Hawkins mused last season about how he would feel comfortable putting his life in the hands of the future doctor down the road.
I've coached some guys over the years who were going to be doctors, and I'm going, ?No way he's operating on me,'" he said. "I was thinking the other day that if I was in a car crash and found myself on the operating table and he was the doctor, I like my chances."
Sprague, a business-management major with a 3.50 GPA, was also a first team Academic All-Big 12 selection in 2007. He was third on the team in receiving with 27 catches for 336 yards and two touchdowns. He finished his career ninth on the all-time CU receiving list in both receptions (103) and receiving yards (1,261).
A local Colorado product, Sprague was fourth in his Holyoke High School class with a 4.078 GPA and won the prestigious Fred Steinmark Award, presented by the Rocky Mountain News to the state's most outstanding senior for accomplishment in sport academics and citizenship.