NORTHBROOK, Ill. – For the second time in four years, a University of Delaware football team member is finalist for the prestigious Allstate AFCA Good Works Team.®  

Blue Hen junior Ryan Cobb, a key member of Delaware’s tight end corps and a native of Saddle Brook, N.J. (Don Bosco Prep), was one of 22 collegiate players selected Tuesday as finalists for the award, which is sponsored by the Allstate Insurance Company and the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA).

The Good Works Team® recognizes the “good works” of a select group of college football players from across the country and is one of the most prestigious off-the-field honors in college sports.  The award pays tribute to the positive impact these young athletes have had on their communities and the lives of others. Some have called the award the Heisman Trophy for good deeds.

Back in 2010, Blue Hen senior defensive tackle Siddiq Haynes was named the captain of the Good Works Team as he received the most votes in a nationwide on-line poll to select the student-athlete who best represented the ideals of the award. Haynes received the award at halftime of the Allstate® Sugar Bowl® in New Orleans just days before competing for the Hens in the NCAA Division I FCS national championship game in Frisco, Tex.

Fans can vote for the 2013 Allstate AFCA Good Works Team® Captain by visiting and searching “Good Works.”  There, fans can learn more about this year’s team members and vote for the player who they feel represents the “best of the best” in the areas of giving back and contributing to the greater good of their communities.  The Team Captain and his fellow award recipients will be invited to New Orleans to take part in a community project leading up to the 2014 Allstate® Sugar Bowl®.  

Cobb, a fashion merchandising major, has been involved in numerous community service events in his two years at Delaware since transferring from the University of Virginia. He has played a key role in such worthy services projects that have involved the Sunday Breakfast Mission, A.I. duPont Children’s Hospital, Greater Newark Boys and Girls Club, Be the Match Bone Marrow registry program, St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital, UDance, B+ Foundation, Patient 9 Foundation, #ForNico Foundation, and the Special Olympics Pigskin Pass program. In addition, he is a member of the UD Football Leadership Council and the Blue Hen Leadership Program.

“It’s very special to be part of this great group and a real honor,” said Cobb. “When I came to Delaware, I was told that Siddiq had won this award and I said to myself ‘I want to win that too’,” said Cobb. “I really enjoy going out into the community and helping people as much as I can. My father is my inspiration and a great role model. Growing up I saw the kinds of things he did, working with inner-city kids and taking part in community service projects. He taught me how important it is to reach out and help other people.”

For more than two decades, the Allstate AFCA Good Works Team® has recognized college football players at all levels of the sport for inspiring acts of service and off-the-field achievements. This summer, the program received a record 150 nominations from colleges and universities across the country.  From the nominations, an esteemed voting panel comprised of former Allstate AFCA Good Works Team® members and college football media selected 11 players from the Football Bowl Subdivision and 11 players from the Football Championship Subdivision, Divisions II, III and the NAIA to comprise the 22-player team.

“Allstate is thrilled to embark on another year of collaboration with the AFCA, and together honor this group of extraordinary young men for their “good works” in the community,” said Cynthia Whitfield, field senior vice president of Allstate’s Southern region and a member of the 2013 voting panel.  “As fans of college football, Allstate continues to be inspired by the remarkable performances that take place on-the-field, but equally inspiring are the acts of service that have earned these 22 players a spot on the 2013 AFCA Good Works Team®.”

Named to the team for the NCAA Division I FBS level were WR Fred Lee (Buffalo), LB Nick Forbes (California), FB Jordan Luallen (Cincinnati), OL Dave Harding (Duke), QB Jacob Karam (Memphis), QB Stephen Morris (Miami), RB C.J. Zimmerer (Nebraska), TE Asa Watson (North Carolina State), PK Jeff Budzien (Northwestern), QB Eric Soza (Texas-San Antonio), and PK Carey Spear (Vanderbilt).

Cobb was joined on the NCAA FCS I, II, III, and NAIA team by DE Tyler Simmons (Aurora), DB J.D. Mehlhorn (Bethel, Minn.), PK Curt Duncan (Carson-Newman), DB Miles Williams (Elon), QB Kevin Rodgers (Henderson State), OL David Brackett (Kenyon), P Jordan Sitzmann (Morningside), QB Jordan Reid (North Carolina Central), DB Winston Wright (South Dakota State), and QB Bo Cordell (Tusculum).

This year’s Allstate AFCA Good Works Team® boasts some of the most impressive service resumes in the award’s 22-year history.  From building houses overseas, to founding a mentorship program for at-risk youth, to serenading cancer patients at the local children’s hospital, this unique group of young men continues to raise the bar for the impact that student-athletes can have on their peers, teammates and communities.
"The AFCA, along with our partner Allstate, has been honoring football student-athletes for their good works, volunteerism and community service for 22 years with the Allstate AFCA Good Works Team," Grant Teaff, AFCA Executive Director said. "The 2013 class of Good Works Team members is another great example of the outstanding athletes, and even better men, that our nation's college football programs produce each year."

The 2013 Allstate AFCA Good Works Team® voting panel includes: former Good Works Team® members Zaid Abdul-Aleem (Duke, 1994 team), Matt Stinchcomb (Georgia, 1997, 1998 teams), Brian Brenberg (St. Thomas, 2001 team), Mike Proman (Amherst, 2002 team); media members Lou Holtz (ESPN), Kirk Herbstreit (ESPN), Tom O’Toole (USA Today), Blair Kerkhoff (Kansas City Star); current AFCA President and University of Texas Head Coach Mack Brown; 1987 AFCA President LaVell Edwards, former head coach at Brigham Young University; and Cynthia Whitfield, field vice president of Allstate’s Southern Region.