UC Bearcats Football News: Briggs Named to Wuerffel Trophy Watch List

By Bane Rossi

Jawon Briggs surveying the offense (courtesy UC Sports Communications)

August 03, 2023

The 2022 All-AAC First Team honoree was recognized for one of college football’s most coveted community service awards.

CINCINNATI – University of Cincinnati fifth-year senior defensive end Jowon Briggs was named to the preseason watch list for the 2023 Wuerffel Trophy on Thursday.

The honor is presented annually to the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) community service leader who best combines exemplary service with leadership achievement on and off the field.

Briggs started all 13 games at nose tackle and totaled 61 tackles, 4.5 tackles for loss and three sacks to collect All-AAC First Team honors in 2022. He set career marks in tackles and tackles for loss, while his 61 tackles were the most on the defensive line. He was named to an Athlon Sports Preseason All-Big 12 Third Team selection this offseason and enters his third season at Cincinnati with 18 career starts after initially playing at Virginia from 2019-20.

A two-time AAC All-Academic Team honoree, Briggs earned his bachelor’s degree in interdisciplinary studies with an interest in physics and music and will complete a second degree in software development in December. He is also an accomplished musician and husband to Nyjae Briggs and father to two kids, Jowon and Reine.

In the community, Briggs dedicates his time to numerous local organizations around Cincinnati, volunteering at Lighthouse Youth & Family Services, which provides health services and relief housing for local youth and families, in addition to working with Matthew 25 Ministries and Cincinnati and Hamilton County Public Libraries. The vice president of the Alpha Phi Alpha fraternity on campus, he assists in the coordination of philanthropic efforts and community service initiatives.

The Cincinnati native remains involved in the program’s community service events, regularly visiting elementary students, taking part in community clean-up and other projects.

He was nominated for the AllState AFCA Good Works Team, another coveted community service honor, in July.

Cincinnati general manager Zach Grant was named to 247Sports’ 30 Under 30 list on Wednesday. He was previously the FootballScoop.com Player Personnel Director of the Year in 2021 while at WKU, playing a pivotal role in recruiting there and at Ohio State in 2022.

The Wuerffel Trophy has honored college football players who serve others, celebrates their impact, and inspires greater service across the nation. A member of the National College Football Awards Association, the Wuerffel Trophy is presented annually to the FBS player who best combines exemplary community service with leadership achievement on and off the field. It is the first major award honoring the character of service to others. The Wuerffel Trophy is named after Heisman Trophy winner, College Football Hall of Famer, former NFL quarterback, and renowned humanitarian Danny Wuerffel, whose life mission is to inspire greater service in the world. Wuerffel led the University of Florida to four SEC Championships and the Gators’ first National Football Championship as the team’s star quarterback. The 1996 Heisman Trophy winner set 17 NCAA and Florida records and won a myriad of other awards including the Maxwell Award, the Davey O’Brien Award, and The William V. Campbell Trophy, presented to the nation’s top scholar-athlete. As a nationally recognized humanitarian, Wuerffel inspires leaders to use their influence to make a positive impact and currently serves as President of the Wuerffel Foundation.