By Matt Leon
WEST CHESTER, Pa. (CBS) – The West Chester University Golden Rams will be on the road on Saturday, taking on Bloomsburg in the second round of the NCAA Division II Championship Tournament. While that is the main focus for the squad, it should be noted that one of its stars has made a pretty exclusive list.
Senior running back Rondell White has been named one of nine finalists for the Harlon Hill Award, which is the Division II version of the Heisman Trophy.
“It’s pretty awesome,” White tells KYW Newsradio. “It’s pretty amazing. Just to be a finalist, it is kind of like amazing. It shows that if you work hard at something, stuff like this can happen.”
Listen to Matt’s full interview with Rondell White:
White, who went to Rustin High School in West Chester, is in the midst of an incredible senior season that is putting the cap on a phenomenal career. Here in 2013, White has rushed for 1,715 yards (program record) and twenty touchdowns and he also has caught a team-high 61 passes for 710 yards and two more scores. He is second in the nation (in Division II) all-purpose yards per game.
For his career, White is at the top of the West Chester list in rushing yards. He is also a member of a very exclusive club. He is one of two college football players in NCAA history, at any level, to compile 4,000 yards rushing, 2,000 yards receiving and 1,100 yards in returns in his career. The other? Former Villanova and Eagles star running back Brian Westbrook.
West Chester head coach Bill Zwaan has thoroughly enjoyed having White lead the way the last four years.
“He’s had such a great career,” Zwaan says. “He is such a competitor. He’s driven us to some wins by himself, so this is a great reward for what he’s done. He’s one of the best players I’ve ever coached, one of the most versatile players for sure. And none of that means anything to him right now. He wants to win Saturday more than the Harlon Hill or any other award. But it is a great honor for him, and I’m really glad that he’s got that opportunity.”
White is keeping it all in perspective as he gets ready for Saturday.
“It’s been a great season thus far,” White says. “Many of the guys have achieved many great things this year. We’ve got another test this Saturday against Bloomsburg, really great team. They knocked us off earlier in the year (31-28 on November 9th) and we are ready for round two.”
White is the first Harlon Hill finalist for West Chester University since WR Mike Washington back in 2008.
The Harlon Hill Award will be presented on Friday, December 20th.
You can follow Matt on Twitter @mattleonkyw.