Utah State’s McKade Brady is one of 50 football players across the country nominated for The Burlsworth Trophy, it was announced Tuesday by the Springdale (Ark.) Rotary Club.

The Burlsworth Trophy, now in its third year, is given annually to the most outstanding football player in America who began his career as a walk-on.

Brady is one of three players from the Western Athletic Conference to be nominated for The Burlsworth Trophy, along with Idaho punter Bobby Cowan and San Jose State offensive tackle David Quessenberry. He is also one of two players from the state of Utah to be nominated along with BYU defensive lineman Ezekiel Ansah.

Brady, a 5-foot-11, 197-pound senior safety from Cove, Utah (Sky View HS/BYU), walked-on the Utah State football team during his sophomore season after spending his freshman year competing in track at BYU. As a sophomore, Brady appeared in all 12 games with one start for the Aggies and registered 17 tackles to go along with 1.5 tackles for loss and one forced fumble. Brady was then awarded a scholarship prior to his junior season where he started all 13 games and was third on the team with 86 tackles, to go along with six pass breakups, one forced fumble, one fumble recovery and one tackle for loss. So far in 2012, Brady ranks first on the team and third in the WAC with 81 tackles, to go along with two pass breakups and one forced fumble.

The Burlsworth Trophy is named after Brandon Burlsworth who walked on to Arkansas’ football team in 1994 without one Division I scholarship offer. At Arkansas, Burlsworth worked his way to being a three-year starter and was eventually named an All-American in 1998. Burlsworth was selected as the 63rd overall pick by the Indianapolis Colts in the 1999 NFL draft but was tragically killed in a car accident 11 days later. The Burlsworth Foundation was created in his memory and supports the physical and spiritual needs of children, in particular those children that have limited opportunities.

Springdale Rotary Club will host a banquet on Dec. 3 in Springdale, Ark., to honor the finalists and to announce the 2012 winner. The 2011 winner was quarterback Austin Davis from the University of Southern Mississippi. In his four-year career at USM, Davis amassed 10,727 passing yards, 81 touchdowns and 12,082 yards in total offense. Davis was drafted this year and is now a reserve quarterback for the St. Louis Rams. The inaugural recipient in 2010 was two-time All-ACC center Sean Bedford from Georgia Tech.

For more information about the Burlsworth Trophy, visit www.burlsworthtrophy.com.

Utah State (8-2, 4-0 WAC) continues Western Athletic Conference play this week in its final road game of the year at 19th-ranked Louisiana Tech (9-1, 4-0 WAC) on Saturday, Nov. 17, at 2 p.m. (MT).

Utah State has won a school record nine-straight conference games dating back to last season and is off to its best start to a season since the 1974 team also won eight of its first 10 games.

USU has now won 13 of its last 16 games, which is its best stretch since the 1971-73 seasons. Heading into this weekend’s matchup, Utah State has won six of its last eight road games dating back to last season, including each of its last five in WAC play.

For USU football ticket information, contact the USU Ticket Office at the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum or call 1-888-USTATE-1 or (435) 797-0305. Tickets can also be purchased online.

Doug Hoffman is the assistant athletic director for Utah State University Athletic Media Relations.