Army's Andrew King, along with 42 of the top defensive players in the nation, have been nominated for the Lott IMPACT Trophy award, named in honor of Ronnie Lott, a star cornerback with the USC Trojans, from 1977-1980. The purpose of the award is to recognize the personal character of a true player, one who excels on the football field, and contributes, in any form, to the betterment of their university. IMPACT is an acronym for Integrity, Maturity, Performance, Academics, Community, and Tenacity.
The senior linebacker had a superb junior season, in 2015. King was one of the leaders in the nation in tackles for loss, as a middle linebacker. He tied co-captain Jeremy Timpf for the team lead with 92 tackles. King is a quick defensive back, able to adapt to different offensive schemes. This was evident when he recorded 4.5 sacks against opposing quarterbacks, yet another team high. King was voted as a team captain along with Timpf for the upcoming season.
King has a strong character that has earned him numerous honors and ranks at West Point. He served as a Platoon Leader and Honor Officer. He is well-liked by his officers. He is majoring in Law and Legal Studies. A humbled cadet, King is the first person from his alma mater of Flushing High School in Queens, NY, to attend West Point. He also competed for the U.S. Military Academy Prep School (USMAPS) lacrosse team.
Other notable finalists for the Lott IMPACT Award include Michigan's Jabrill Peppers, a lengthy cornerback who was inserted as a running back under Jim Harbaugh's first season as the coach for the Wolverines. He finished with 45 tackles. Cameron Malveaux of Houston is a force as a defensive end. Malveaux, like King, posed a threat to opposing quarterbacks; he recorded 9 quarterback hurries last season.
Last year's winner was Penn State's Carl Nassib, who was drafted in the third round by the Cleveland Browns. Other notable winners include J.J. Watt from Wisconsin and Luke Keuchly of Boston College, who won the Lott Award in 2010 and 2011 respectively. Can Andrew King join this elite list? He does anchor the Black Knights' defense after all.