Northern Illinois tight end Jason Schepler (Sycamore, Ill./Sycamore HS) has been named one of 30 candidates for the 2012 Senior CLASS Award for Football, which is presented annually to an NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision senior who excels in four areas of excellence: community, classroom, character and competition.
Schepler is the only Mid-American Conference representative, and the only player from an Illinois team, on the candidates list for 2012.
One of the unquestioned leaders of the 2012 Huskies, Schepler returned for his senior year after sitting out last season with a knee injury and his return has made a huge impact on a young Northern Illinois offense.
His run-blocking ability has been instrumental as an NIU back has rushed for 100 yards or more in each of the first three games of the season. He has twice been named as one of the Huskies’ Offensive Players of the Week by the coaching staff.
In the classroom, Schepler carries a 3.85 grade point average in electrical engineering, while his community service work includes activities and speaking engagements at schools, nursing homes and hospitals. He has volunteered at elementary school Fun Fairs, Boy Scouts “Sports Day” on the NIU campus and summer camps.
While rehabbing from a knee injury in 2011, he assisted the Huskie offense, and especially the tight ends and fullbacks, at practice every day. He continued to serve as a member of the Northern Illinois Leadership Council and in his fourth year serving in that role in 2012.
An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School ®, the Senior CLASS Award focuses on the total student-athlete and encourages students to use their platform in athletics to make a positive impact as leaders in their communities.
The candidate class will be narrowed to 10 finalists midway through the regular season, and those 10 names will be placed on the official ballot. Ballots will be distributed through a nationwide voting system to media, coaches and fans, who will select one candidate who best exemplify excellence in community, classroom, character and competition.