Eason-Riddle Named to 2019 Allstate AFCA Good Works Team
National Community Service Recognition for Gamecock Linebacker
University of South Carolina junior linebacker Spencer Eason-Riddle is one of 22 student-athletes selected for the 2019 Allstate AFCA Good Works Team®, it was announced today. Narrowed from a list of 137 nominees by an esteemed panel of judges, including Kirk Herbstreit and Tim Tebow, the 22 players stood out for their leadership in local communities and overall commitment to giving back.
Eason-Riddle intentionally makes time to give back to the community, putting in extensive hours each year in volunteer work. Most notably, he has been a regular at both the Dorn VA Medical Center and at the oncology center of the Prisma Health Children’s Hospital. He founded and developed the “Sandstorm Buddies Program” which matches University of South Carolina student-athletes with patients and their families through a buddy system, where the student-athletes can serve in a mentor capacity with cancer patients. He is a two-time member of the SEC Community Service team, a two-time member of the SEC Fall Academic Honor Roll and was the 2018 Dr. Harris Pastides Outstanding Student-Athlete Award recipient. He graduated in May with a degree in public health and is currently working towards a Master’s degree in health administration.
“Because being a student-athlete is about more than their performance on the field, we’re honored to share the stories of these deserving young men who embody the ‘good’ in college athletics,” said John O’Donnell, president of Allstate’s Western Territory. “At Allstate, we are inspired by their positive impact and we unite in this passion to serve local communities.”
The team acts of service range from the founding of an organization that serves the homeless, to raising research funds for the rare disease community. Nearly all are involved in local youth mentorship initiatives, and the team has collectively volunteered thousands of hours to better the lives of those in their communities.
“I’ve had the privilege of not only being a member of the Allstate AFCA Good Works Team, but also witnessing firsthand how these young men are able to inspire and ultimately change the lives of those around them,” said Tim Tebow, two-time national champion and former Allstate AFCA Good Works Team member. “Each year, I’m impressed by the way that Allstate and the AFCA share the important stories of these players’ ‘good works,’ and I’m honored to be part of such a special program that has become a source of inspiration in the college football community.”
The Allstate AFCA Good Works Team will be invited to the 2020 Allstate® Sugar Bowl® and will join Tebow and Allstate volunteers to give back to New Orleans through a special community service project. Allstate will recognize the team during the halftime show.
Fans are invited to visit ESPN.com/Allstate to vote for the 2019 Allstate AFCA Good Works Team captain once per day, now through Nov. 22. The team captain will be honored at The Home Depot College Football Awards on ESPN later this season.
The Allstate AFCA Good Works Team was selected by an esteemed voting panel, which includes Tebow, Herbstreit and O’Donnell, along with: Zaid Abdul-Aleem (Duke, 1994 team); Matt Stinchcomb (Georgia, 1997, 1998 teams); Brian Brenberg (St. Thomas, 2001 team); Mike Proman (Amherst, 2002 team); Wes Counts (Middle Tennessee State, 1999 team); media members Blair Kerkhoff (Kansas City Star), and Paul Myerberg (USA TODAY); Frank Solich, 2019 AFCA President and Ohio University Head Coach; and Joe Taylor, 2001 AFCA President and athletic director at Virginia Union University.
“This is the 12th year that Allstate has partnered with the AFCA to help honor deserving football student-athletes on the Good Works Team,” AFCA Executive Director Todd Berry said. “This award embodies what is great about the human spirit, football student-athletes and coaches from all parts of the country dedicated to one thing, giving of their time and energy to make a difference in their communities.”
Throughout the season, fans can follow along and join the conversation by using #GoodWorksTeam on their social media channels to learn more about these incredible players and their stories.
About the Allstate AFCA Good Works Team
The Allstate AFCA Good Works Team was established in 1992, by the College Football Association, to recognize extra efforts by players and student support staff off the field. AFCA became the governing body of the award in 1997 and continues to honor players who go the extra mile for those in need. Allstate became the presenting sponsor starting with the 2008 season.
Since the recognition program began, the SEC leads all conferences with 75 athletes, followed by the Atlantic Coast Conference with 43, and the Big 12 Conference with 35. Super Bowl XLII, XLVI and XLI champion quarterbacks Eli and Peyton Manning were members of the 2002 and 1997 Allstate AFCA Good Works Teams, respectively.