Former ASU QB Brady White wins Campbell Trophy as college football’s top scholar-athlete – The Arizona Republic

Former Arizona State quarterback Brady White won the Campbell Trophy on Tuesday night as the top scholar-athlete in college football. White received the honor from the 2020 season but was recognized in person for the award at the 63rd NFF Annual Awards Dinner. 

White, a former four-star recruit for Arizona State, played four games with ASU before suffering season-ending injury in 2016 that led to his departure.

He transferred to Memphis in 2018, but not before completing his degree at Arizona State. White graduated cum laude with a 3.58 GPA in business, and then went on to complete his master’s in sports administration at Memphis in just over a year. He is currently pursuing a doctorate in liberal studies. 

Each finalist receives an $18,000 postgraduate scholarship, and White will receive an additional $7,000 in postgraduate scholarship money as well as the Campbell Trophy. 

In this short Q&A, White reflects on his honor, and his time at Arizona State.

Q: What does it mean to be a Campbell winner? 

A: “It means the world to me to be a Campbell winner. Obviously, last year was unique and definitely a special year, so it’s a privilege to finally be here and be a part of this whole event. Last year, when I won the award, it meant the world to me, and it was something that was extremely important to me, more than any other award in college football. So I took a great deal of pride becoming a part of this fraternity and being a part of that small group of Campbell award winners so I hope that I continue to make the committee proud.” 

Q: How did you find out you won the award? 

A: “I found out through a pretty cool phone call with Archie Manning, which was awesome for me, just being a football fanatic. That was my first time interacting with Archie over the phone and that was a very special phone call. Obviously, I got to interact with more people from the committee, I got to interact with Peyton (Manning) over the phone a little bit. There was no in-person ceremony, I still had a pretty special moment when I found out.” 

Q: What were both of your experiences at Arizona State and Memphis like? 

A: “I’m an alumni of both. Coming out of high school, I fell in love with Arizona State and at the time, they were competing at an extremely high level on the field. They still are. The area is beautiful, if you’ve ever been to Arizona, the style of living is nice. For me, I have always challenged myself academically, and when I was exposed to Barrett, the Honors College, I know a lot of people don’t know about that, it’s kind of a hidden gem. When I saw that, I really saw an opportunity to push myself in my area. Those were the few things that went into really selling that university towards me. I had a blast there and to this day, I’m a Sun Devil and absolutely love everything about Arizona State. Obviously, I transferred and that wasn’t part of the plan. An injury here and there, some personnel on the coaching staff changing, it was something that felt like it was right. It wasn’t part of the plan, but God works in mysterious ways and I’m a big believer in that. I think everything along my journey transpired me and led me to that point. I ultimately made my decision with my family and loved ones to move and transfer to Memphis and reconnect with coach (Mike) Norvell, who recruited me out of high school to Arizona State. The rest was history from that point on. Memphis was a very special place. It will always be a second home to me. I will always be a Sun Devil and Tiger.” 

Q: What was your academic path like in college football? 

A: “For me it was always very important to push academically and in the classroom. That’s why when I was looking into universities coming out of high school, I wanted to make sure I was doing everything I could to succeed at the highest level. I graduated high school early to get to Arizona State, not only to start school and get a head start in football, but I wanted a challenge. That helped me to graduate early with my undergrad, and I made that move to Memphis. As soon as I got to Memphis, I started my Master’s degree, finished that in a year, and still had a handful of years left to play football. I looked into whether I wanted another Master’s degree, but then I said, you know what, I’m going to go take on my PhD. I’m still working on that and I fully intend to finish that. It’s an extremely great opportunity and I’m blessed to have it.” 

Q: What’s your dream job? 

A: “Right now, I’m extremely focused on continuing to play as long as possible. Even when my time is up, hopefully when my time is up 20 years or however many years down the line, I want to do something that involves this game or sports at the least. I’m still trying to figure that out, there’s a handful of avenues in my mind that I’m looking at.” 

Reach the reporter at jenna.ortiz@arizonarepublic.com or 602-647-4122. Follow her on Twitter @jennarortiz

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