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Soza named Senior CLASS Award candidate on Wednesday

Courtesy: UTSA Athletics
Release: 09/04/2013
Courtesy UTSA Athletics
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OVERLAND PARK, Kan. — Eric Soza was one of 30 Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) student-athletes selected as candidates for the 2013 Senior CLASS Award on Wednesday.

Soza, a three-year team captain, has started under center 21 times in UTSA's first two-plus seasons. The Beeville native has led the Roadrunners to 13 wins during that time, as they have made the transition from Football Championship Subdivision independent into the Western Athletic Conference and now into Conference USA. Also a 2013 AFCA Good Works Team nominee, he was one of five finalists for the 2013 Coach John Wooden Citizenship Cup and one of 10 for the 2012 Awards and Recognition Association Sportsmanship Award.

Soza has been just as impressive away from the playing field. He is an active member of UTSA's community service program in addition to serving as the president of the school's student-athlete advisory committee. Soza also maintained a near-perfect grade-point average (3.96) en route to graduating with a degree in physical education this past May. He currently is attending graduate school with plans of getting into coaching when his playing career is complete.

To be eligible for the award, a student-athlete must be classified as an NCAA Division I FBS senior and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence – community, classroom, character and competition.

An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School, the Senior CLASS Award focuses on the total student-athlete and encourages students to use their platform in athletics to make a positive impact as leaders in their communities.

The 30 candidates will be narrowed to 10 finalists midway through the regular season. Ballots then will be distributed through a nationwide voting system to media, coaches and fans, who will select one candidate who best exemplifies excellence in the four Cs of community, classroom, character and competition. This year's winner will be announced during the football bowl season in early January.

2013 Senior CLASS Award candidates
· Lamin Barrow, LSU
· Chris Borland, Wisconsin
· Derek Carr, Fresno State
· Steven Clark, Auburn
· Ross Cockrell, Duke
· Vincenzo D’Amato, California
· Alden Darby, Arizona State
· Jake Fischer, Arizona
· Andrew Furney, Washington State
· Dave Harding, Duke
· Greg Heban, Indiana
· Gabe Ikard, Oklahoma
· Will Jackson, Georgia Tech
· Jacob Karam, Memphis
· Jordan Lynch, Northern Illinois
· Taylor Martinez, Nebraska
· Jake Matthews, Texas A&M
· AJ McCarron, Alabama
· Jack Mewhort, Ohio State
· Alex Page, South Alabama
· Cairo Santos, Tulane
· Nathan Scheelhaase, Illinois
· Eric Soza, UTSA
· Carey Spear, Vanderbilt
· Will Sutton, Arizona State
· Travis Swanson, Arkansas
· John Urschel, Penn State
· Kyle Van Noy, BYU
· Avery Williamson, Kentucky
· Ty Zimmerman, Kansas State

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