Iowa offensive lineman Brandon Scherff wins 2014 Outland Trophy

December 11, 2014

Iowa senior offensive tackle Brandon Scherff today was named the winner of the 69th Outland Trophy as the nation's best interior lineman.

"Brandon came back for his senior year with a mission to prove, and I think he has done that," said Iowa head coach Kirk Ferentz, who was also the Hawkeyes' head coach when Gallery claimed the honor. "From a leadership standpoint, having a guy play at an NFL level on a college playing field has been important to our football team. The toughness he brings, the attention to detail, the physical nature of his play, he's pretty special . At the end of the day it is all on the tape. The tape doesn't lie, he is the best."

Going into Iowa's Taxslayer Bowl game against Tennessee on Jan. 2, Scherff has started 25 straight games for the Hawkeyes. In all he has played in 43 games and started 35 of them. He has been a strong leader in all four seasons that he has played in Iowa City. Iowa, 7-5, ranks 68th in scoring offense (28.3 ppg) and 66th in total offense (398.3 ypg). At left tackle, he has been rock solid this season for the Hawkeyes who have traditionally produced good offensive linemen.

"His enjoyment is evident in his approach and how he plays every day," said Ferentz.  "The way he plays in every practice, in games, the way he prepares, the way he trains; if you don't think this guy is enjoying himself, you're probably not paying attention."

The 6-5, 320-pound Scherff became the fourth Hawkeye to win the Outland Trophy after Calvin Jones (1955), Alex Karras (1957), and Robert Gallery (2003). Only players from Nebraska (eight different ones, nine total) and Oklahoma (five) have won more Outland Trophies than Iowa, with Ohio State players also claiming four.

"I'd say I have no regrets at all," said Scherff, about coming back for his senior season. "I play smarter, faster. And obviously you get more time to study film and just go out and play football."

Scherff, an all-sports star from Denison, Iowa, a town of a little more than 8,000 people in the western part of the state, actually played quarterback in the lower grades and at the beginning of his high school career.

"I didn't come back for my senior year because of the Outland," said Scherff. "But I started thinking about it toward the end of the season."

There's a tie among Scherff, Gallery, and also the 1987 Outland Trophy winner, Chad Hennings from Air Force. They are the only three native Iowans to win the Outland, and they have all been coached by Reese Morgan, the current defensive line coach at Iowa and Hennings' former high school coach. Morgan recruited both Gallery and Scherff to Iowa and was previously the Hawkeyes' offensive line coach.

Also in attendance were Auburn center Russ Dismukes and Texas defensive tackle Malcom Brown, the other two 2014 Outland finalists.

The Outland Trophy, which has been awarded annually since 1946, is named after the late John Outland, an All-America lineman at Pennsylvania in the late 1800s. It is the third oldest player award in major-college football behind the Heisman Trophy and Maxwell Award.

The Outland Trophy is a member of the National College Football Awards Association (NCFAA). The NCFAA encompasses the most prestigious awards in college football.

By Staff of

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