Oct. 5, 2011
LEXINGTON, Ky. -- Kentucky fans, a Wildcat needs your help!
UK defensive end Jacob Lewellen is on the ballot to be named captain of the 2011 Good Works Team selected by the Allstate Insurance Company and the American Football Coaches Association. Lewellen was named to the Good Works Team recently in honor of his outstanding community service.
Fans can vote weekly through Nov. 4. Cat fans, it’s up to you to vote for Jacob at this website, here.
The Team Captain and his fellow award recipients will be invited to New Orleans to take part in a special volunteer project leading up to the 2012 Allstate Sugar Bowl.
Lewellen, a native of Louisville, Ky., has been very involved in community service projects during his Kentucky career, leading the team in volunteer hours with over 90 hours (and counting) in giving back to the community.
He is the most active in “Athletes in Action,” an international Christian sports ministry organization where he serves as a Leadership Team Member. With AIA he leads two weekly Bible studies on campus - one for freshman football team members and one for all upperclassmen on campus. He also mentors freshman football players on a weekly basis and has spent his last two spring breaks in mission work, traveling to Nicaragua in the spring of 2010 and speaking to a youth detention center in Dayton Beach, Fla., in 2011.
During the summer, Lewellen spearheaded a group of UK athletes and staff members to pack bags on the back patio at the Nutter Training Center to take to Joplin, Mo., after the town was devastated by a tornado in July. Lewellen also got his football teammates to donate money to the cause, and together, he, his dad and teammate Max Godby drove to Joplin to help.
The three men went to a church in Joplin where they delivered 100 bags filled with toothpaste, toothbrushes, soap, shampoo, hand sanitizer, folders, pens, pencils, paper and bibles.
Lewellen's work to organize the donations and drive personally, to the town is just one example of his off-field resume. Lewellen has also been a guest speaker at local elementary schools, met with local veterans and befriended a three-year-old cancer patient at Lexington's Hope Lodge.
“Thanks to Allstate and the AFCA for sponsoring this award,” Lewellen said. “I’m really honored and humbled, when I looked at the list of nominees and all the things they have done. Everybody on that (nominee) list is deserving of this award.”
Lewellen said he has two motivations for service – his faith and the inspiration he received from a teammate, former Wildcat offensive lineman Marcus Davis.
“Marcus got me involved (with service) when I got here,” Lewellen said. “He showed me that I need to surrender myself and serve the community. Christ is also (a motivation). If I didn’t see the gospel, I wouldn’t have the motivation to serve.
“Helping people is something that we, as athletes, should do. Athletics is a platform and we should use it to serve.”
Coach Joker Phillips is proud of the honor bestowed upon Lewellen.
“Jacob is a great example of our student-athlete model of Operation Win,” Phillips said. “He’s a winner in the classroom, gives a winning effort on the field and is obviously a winner in the community.”
Lewellen is the 11th Wildcat to be chosen during the 20 years of the Good Works Team. Kentucky ranks third all-time among Division I schools, behind Georgia and Nebraska, for players chosen for the team.
Kentucky’s all-time list of winners includes:
1992 Doug Pelfrey, kicker
1994 Leon Smith, wide receiver
1996 Kurt Supe, defensive end
1998 Jimmy Carter, punter
1999 Seth Hanson, kicker
2000 Matt Layow, defensive end
2002 Antonio Hall, offensive tackle
2004 Antoine Huffman, cornerback
2006 Jacob Tamme, tight end
2008 Tim Masthay, punter
2011 Jacob Lewellen, defensive end