National Football Foundation honors BYU’s Brady Christensen
BYU tops all FBS schools with most Hampshire Honor Society selections since inception of the program
IRVING, Texas – The National Football Foundation (NFF) & College Football Hall of Fame recognized former BYU All-American offensive tackle Brady Christensen as a member of its 2021 NFF Hampshire Honor Society.
With 65 overall honorees, BYU ranks No. 1 among all FBS programs for the most players to earn recognition in the NFF Hampshire Honor Society since the inception of the program in 2007. The Honor Society is comprised of college football players from all divisions of play who maintained a cumulative 3.2 GPA or better throughout their college careers while being a starter or significant contributor. This year 910 players from 255 schools qualified for membership in the Society's 15th year.
BYU (65), Minnesota (53), Duke (51), Rice (50) and Ohio State (47) round out the top-five programs recognized overall among FBS schools. The Cougars are also one of six FBS schools to have had at least one player honored in all 15 years of the NFF Hampshire Honor Society (2007-21) along with Minnesota, West Virginia, Penn State, Kentucky and SMU.
While achieving in the classroom as an accounting major at BYU, Christensen earned Consensus All-America honors on the field in 2020 to become the first BYU player to receive the distinction since tight end Dennis Pitta in 2009. The 6-foot-5, 302-pound left tackle became the 12th Cougar overall to be recognized as a Consensus All-American, joining Marc Wilson (1979), Nick Eyre (1980), Jim McMahon (1981), Gordon Hudson (1982 and 1983), Steve Young (1983), Jason Buck (1986), Mo Elewonibi (1989), Chris Smith (1990), Ty Detmer (1990 and 1991), Luke Staley (2001) and Pitta (2009).
With a total of 12 first or second-team citations, Christensen was named to more All-America teams in a single season than any other player in BYU football history. He finished the 2020 season as the highest-graded offensive tackle in the country by Pro Football Focus with a 96.0 rating, earning grades above 95.0 as both a pass-blocker and run-blocker throughout the regular 2020 season. His overall rating set a new PFF college record, breaking the standard set by 2019 Outland Trophy winner Penei Sewell in 2019.
A graduate of Bountiful High, Christensen was two-star prospect coming out of high school in 2015 but became an immediate impact player after returning from a mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to New Zealand and following a redshirt season in 2017. In three seasons from 2018-20, Christensen started in all 38 games. The Cougars finished the 2020 season with an 11-1 record and No. 11 national ranking after a dominant 49-23 victory over UCF in the RoofClaim.com Boca Raton Bowl.
Christensen decided to forgo his senior season to declare for the 2021 NFL Draft. He is anticipated to become the first BYU offensive lineman drafted since Scott Young in 2005.
“We are pleased to honor another impressive group of athletes as part of this year’s Hampshire Honor Society,” said NFF President & CEO Steve Hatchell. “For more than a decade, the Hampshire Honor Society has served as a powerful vehicle for schools to recognize their college football players who have distinguished themselves both academically and athletically, and we congratulate the schools and each of these young men for their commitment to excellence in all aspects of their lives.”
The NFF Hampshire Honor Society capitalizes on the NFF's National Scholar-Athlete program by greatly expanding the number of scholar-athletes the NFF can recognize each year. The program further strengthens the organization's leadership role in encouraging academic performance by the student-athletes at the 765 colleges and universities with football programs nationwide. The initiative has now honored 13,077 student-athletes since its inception.