IRVING, Texas – Ryan Smith, from Brookville and a graduate of Northmont High School was honored by the National Football Foundation and College Hall of Fame last week by being named to the 2020 NFF Hampshire Honor Society.
The Hampshire Honor Society of the NFF is comprised of college football players from all divisions of play who each maintained a cumulative 3.2 GPA or better throughout their college careers. An impressive 1,432 players from 364 schools qualified for membership in the Society’s 14th year.
Smith, who played quarterback at Northmont was a defensive back at Butler University in Indianapolis.
Butler had 11 student-athletes recognized in 2020. Sam Badovinac, Drew Bevelhimer, Dan DelGrosso, Nick Mahalak, Justin Markus, John McArthur, Eric Perry, Luke Sennett, Smith, Sammy Szames and Brad Sznajder whom all held a GPA above 3.2.
They are all set to graduate.
“We are pleased to honor another impressive group of athletes as part of this year’s Hampshire Honor Society,” said NFF President and 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 775 colleges and universities with football programs nationwide. The initiative has now honored 12,127 student-athletes since its inception.
Seventeen schools had at least 10 honorees in 2020, including Brown, Butler, Chicago, Ill., Dayton, Harvard, Johns Hopkins, Macalester, Minn., Massachusetts Institute of Technology, North Central, Ill., Saint John’s, Minn., Springfield, Mass., St. Thomas, Minn., Trine, Ind., Washington Univ. in St. Louis, Wayne State, Mich., Wisconsin-Whitewater and Yale.
The University of Dayton and Butler are members of the Pioneer Football Conference in NCAA division I-AA (non-scholarship).
“We have honored more than 12,000 student-athletes in the last 14 years thanks to Jon Hanson’s generosity,” said NFF Chairman, and College Football Hall of Fame member and former NFL standout, Archie Manning. “We are grateful for his passionate belief in the scholar-athlete ideal, and the Hampshire Honor Society allows us to showcase the names of tomorrow’s leaders while inspiring future generations to follow in their footsteps.”
Smith is the son of Eric and Cathy Smith of Brookville.
His biography on the Butlersports.com Web site lists his statistical honors from this past season as having played in all 12 games, starting in the final 10. He ranked fifth on the team with 51 tackles, broke up four passes, and he recorded an interception at Morehead State on Oct. 19.
Smith ranked 18th in the PFL in tackles among defensive backs, recorded a season-high seven tackles at Princeton on Sept. 21, and he ended his career with six tackles at Dayton on Nov. 23.
Due to COVID-19 Butler University cancelled their graduation scheduled for May 9 and last week that they will have the May graduates walk with those graduating following the Fall semester on Dec. 18. at Hinkle Fieldhouse on the Butler University campus.
Smith will receive two diplomas. One from Butler University with a degree in Chemistry and one from Purdue University with a degree in Biomedical Engineering.
He has maintained a 3.4 GPA throughout his five years of schooling while playing football all five years. He has been on the Dean’s List throughout his college career.