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UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - Penn State senior linebacker Brandon Smith (Winfield, Pa.) Allstate AFCA (American Football Coaches Association) Good Works Team. He is among the 11 FBS and 22 overall honorees for their contributions to the community. Smith is the fourth Nittany Lion to earn Allstate AFCA Good Works Team honors, joining Ben Kline (2015), Stefen Wisniewski (2010) and Wayne Holmes (1994).
In its 26th year, the Allstate AFCA Good Works Team® shines a spotlight on the incredible stories of selflessness and community service displayed by these student-athletes and honorary head coach, and honors their dedication to volunteerism and enriching the lives of others.
Fans are encouraged to visit ESPN.com/Allstate to vote for the 2017 Allstate AFCA Good Works Team® Captain now through November 23, 2017. The Team Captain will be honored at this season's The Home Depot College Football Awards on ESPN.
"The 2017 Allstate AFCA Good Works Team is a shining example of the great student-athletes that populate the rosters of college football teams all across the nation," AFCA Executive Director Todd Berry said. "Since 2008, the AFCA takes great pride in working with Allstate to honor these 22 outstanding student-athletes, and honorary head coach Pat Fitzgerald, who go above and beyond to make their universities and communities a better place."
Smith has nine tackles, including two tackles for loss, in three games this season. Last year, Smith started the season as the third-string Mike linebacker but was thrust into starting in the third game of the season due to a series of injuries to the three opening day starting linebackers. Smith shined in his expanded role, ranking sixth on the team with 54 tackles and leading the squad with two interceptions. He also had three pass breakups and 4.0 tackles for loss. Smith was selected as the Big Ten Defensive Player of the Week after posting 14 tackles in a win over Maryland. His interception and 22-yard return on the first defensive possession of the second half at Purdue sparked a 45-7 second-half surge by the Nittany Lions.
A native of Winfield, Pennsylvania, Smith graduated with a degree in kinesiology last December. He is working on a second degree in health policy and administration and owns a 3.81 GPA. He is a seventh-time Dean's List honoree and recorded a pair of 4.0 semesters during his academic career. In 2016, Smith was selected CoSIDA Academic All-District and was a Big Ten Distinguished Scholar recipient. He intends on working in the health care field.
The senior is also active in the community. In addition to the numerous community service activities that he does as part of the Nittany Lions, Smith helps with his wife's non-profit organization, Honduran Soles, which provides shoes to kids that need them in various countries. He and his wife traveled to Honduras during spring break in 2015 helped build a soccer field. He and his wife have volunteered at homeless shelters, and done other community work through their church, Revival Tabernacle, in Watsontown, Pennsylvania, near his hometown.
The 2017 Allstate AFCA Good Works Team® will be invited to New Orleans to participate in a special community service project ahead of the 2018 Allstate® Sugar Bowl®, where the entire team will also be recognized on the field at halftime.
In addition, Allstate will honor Good Works Team® players by creating special volunteer events in select markets throughout the season in conjunction with its All Hands In program, which encourages the college football community to come together and do good.
Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS)
Daniel Carlson -- Auburn University
Gabe Brandner -- Duke University
Mavin Saunders -- Florida State University
Brent Stockstill -- Middle Tennessee State University
A.J. Cole, III -- North Carolina State University
Brandon Smith -- Pennsylvania State University
Harrison Phillips -- Stanford University
Shaq Jones -- University of Alabama-Birmingham
Aaron Davis -- University of Georgia
Courtney Love -- University of Kentucky
Tommy Openshaw -- Vanderbilt University
Combined Divisions (FCS, II, III & NAIA)
Reece Foy -- Amherst College
Josh Dalki -- Bethel University (Minn.)
Ryan Stratton -- Edinboro University
Jake Daugherty -- Ferris State University
Tyler Schubert -- Franklin & Marshall College
Jacob Jenness -- Northwestern College (Iowa)
Gunnar Orcutt -- Peru State College
Will Gillach -- Saint John's University (Minn.)
Jake Wieneke -- South Dakota State University
Patrick Mohorcic -- The College of Wooster
Dillon Vaughan -- West Texas A&M University
Honorary Head Coach
Pat Fitzgerald -- Northwestern University
The fourth-ranked Nittany Lions visit Iowa for the first time since 2012 Saturday at 7:30 p.m. on ABC. The game can also be heard on GoPSUsports.com and the Penn State Sports Network.
Single-game tickets for the 2017 Penn State football season presented by PSECU are available for three home games (Indiana, Rutgers, Nebraska). For information on joining the Nittany Lion Club and purchasing new 2018 season tickets, as well as club seating in Beaver Stadium, fans can visit www.PSUnrivaled.com, call 1-800-NITTANY weekdays from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. or visit the Bryce Jordan Center ticket office weekdays from 9 a.m-4:30 p.m. More than 9,000 new season tickets have been sold and the season ticket allotment for 2017 has been exhausted.
About the Allstate AFCA Good Works Team®
The Allstate AFCA Good Works Team® was established in 1992 by the College Football Association, recognizing the extra efforts made by college football players and student support staff off the field. AFCA became the governing body of the award in 1997 and continues to honor college football players who go the extra mile for those in need. Allstate worked to present the award starting with the 2008 season.