Dec. 4, 2008
GREENSBORO, N.C. – Georgia Tech defensive tackle Darryl Richard has been named the recipient of the 2008 James E. Tatum Award, Atlantic Coast Conference Commissioner John Swofford announced today.
The Tatum Award is given annually in memory of the late Jim Tatum to the top senior student-athlete among the league’s football players. Tatum, a two-time ACC Coach of the Year, coached in the 1950’s at both Maryland and North Carolina and believed strongly in the concept of the student-athlete.
Richard, who graduated with honors from Tech in just three years and is pursuing his graduate degree, has 10 tackles-for-loss, 4.0 sacks and a fumble recovery in 2008 en route to second-team All-ACC honors.
“Darryl is what a student-athlete should be about,” Tech Head Coach Paul Johnson said. “I am very proud of him. Not only is he an outstanding student, a leader of our football team and a solid representative of Georgia Tech, he’s a great young man.”
Richard had a 3.52 GPA as an undergrad and currently posts a 3.27 grad school GPA. He is considering a potential career in athletic administration and is currently on the search committee to name the next president of Georgia Tech. He is automatically a member of the GTAA Board of Trustees and was on the NCAA Re-certification Committee this past year.
“It’s an honor to be held in such regard by the people who select the award winner,” said Richard. “This award embodies both athletics and academics, the two facets of which I have built my foundation for life. Hopefully, this can be an example to others that there does not have to be a tradeoff between academic and athletic success.”
Richard has served as the President for the Student-Athlete Advisory Board (SAAB) since the fall of 2007. Prior to that, he served on the board as a regular member since the fall of 2006. As one of the football representatives on this board, as well as the president, he has been an integral part of the community outreach efforts by Georgia Tech Athletics. He has also overseen the implementation of the “Code Gold Event” initiative (rallying for support among fellow Georgia Tech student-athletes), the monthly SAAB newsletter to facilitate better communication between student-athletes and Athletic Staff/Administration, “Town Hall” meetings to encourage all student-athletes to have a voice and the first ever Welcome Back event for all student-athletes.
Through his influential role as SAAB President, Richard has facilitated better communication between student-athletes and Athletic Association staff. He is the ringleader in community service for not only his teammates, but for the entire student-athlete body.
As a starting defensive lineman on the football team, Richard still manages to find time to serve his community in several capacities. Not only has he spoken to several local schools on how to achieve success in college, but he also participated in the Special Olympics Georgia Indoor Games, Habitat for Humanity, Think Pink Georgia Tech fund raising efforts, YMCA after-school program at Flowery Branch Elementary School and conducted a football clinic at KIPP WAYS Academy.
Richard is Georgia Tech’s second Tatum Award recipient as free safety Jeremy Muyres was honored in 2002.
Richard and the Yellow Jackets will be participating in the 2008 Chick-fil-A Bowl, New Year’s Eve in the Georgia Dome (7:30 p.m./ESPN). They will take on a team from the SEC to be determined on Sunday.