In 1998, Brandon Burlsworth was an Offensive Guard at Arkansas that was named All American. After the season was over, Burlsworth was drafted by the Indianapolis Colts. Soon after, he was tragically killed in a car wreck.
In 2010, a Burlsworth Trophy was started to present to the best Walk-on player in the country.
The first award was given to Offensive Lineman Sean Bradford from Georgia Tech. The most recent, was given to Baker Mayfield of Oklahoma.
The Burlsworth Trophy was not around when Andre Wadsworth was playing or he would have easily won it. Like the trophies’ namesake, Wadsworth was also an All American. But, Wadsworth lived to
enjoy the fruits of his hard work.
Wadsworth was born in the Virgin Islands, but moved to Miami when his parents divorced at the age of 5. He attended Florida Christian School in Dade county where he did earn some honors.
It’s odd to think now that a player as good as Andre Wadsworth was lightly recruited.
Nobody wanted him to play football for their school except a couple of small schools. But, to his credit, Wadsworth decided to walk-on at Florida State after being invited by Florida State assistant coach Chuck Amato.
Wadsworth was able to redshirt as a true freshman and then played Defensive Tackle as a redshirt freshman well enough to make 2nd team All American. The 1994 Seminoles were 10-1-1 and Wadsworth was 6-4, 255 and he finished second on the team in Quarterback sacks from his Tackle position.
Somewhere along the way, Bobby Bowden placed Wadsworth a scholarship.
1995 was Wadsworth’s sophomore season and he really excelled while finishing 2nd on the team in total tackles.
The Seminoles finished 10-2 and Wadsworth was again a second team All ACC. Wadsworth was now up to 270 pounds.
By the 1996 football season, Wadsworth was a junior and he was up to 282 pounds.
The Florida State Seminoles finished the season with an 11-1 record losing the national title to Florida in the Sugar Bowl.
During Wadsworth’s junior year of eligibility he graduated with a degree in business.
Despite having his degree, Wadsworth decided to return for his senior season in 1997.
He began graduate work in Sports Administration.
Returning for his last season turned into a wise decision for Wadsworth. He was moved outside to Defensive End where he earned consensus All American. Wadsworth totaled 16 Quarterback sacks and 19 tackles for loss.
Wadsworth was picked with the 3rd selection in the 1st round by the Arizona Cardinals.
Wadsworth did not have a great career in the NFL mostly due to injuries. But, he was a great college player and especially for a guy that nobody really wanted.