How the Winner is Selected
From Hundreds of Candidates to the “Twelve Semifinalists” to our “Four Nominees”
Voters will receive an email the day each voting period opens. In that email will be a link to the voting website. Voters must have rla@rotarylombardiaward®.org on their whitelist to accept emails. The email will detail how long voters will have to make their selection via the online voting system. As a convenience to the busy schedule of our voters, the voting period at each of the three votes is open for many days.
There is a designated space on the ballot for writing in candidates, which any voter may write in.
Candidate Eligibility & Voting Criteria:
To be considered for the Rotary Lombardi Award®, players must be a NCAA FBS College Football team member and meet the following qualifications:
Be a down Lineman, end to end, either on offense or defense, setting up no further than ten (10) yards to the left or right of the ball at the time of the snap.
Be a Linebacker on defense, setting up no further than five (5) yards deep from the line of scrimmage.
Must not come out of the offensive backfield and set up on the line of scrimmage as a Blocker or a Receiver or listed in the program as an Offensive Back or Receiver.
Be eligible to participate in the current season.
In addition, other relevant factors, and procedures (such as the ones identified above) may be considered by voters during the selection process.
1. A voter may consider the quality of the candidate’s opposing teams and the candidate’s team’s strength of schedule, as well as the team’s strength of season during the season he is a candidate.
2. A voter may consider the candidate’s statistical performance for the season he is a candidate. The Rotary Lombardi Award® is not a career award. Rather, the Rotary Lombardi Award® is a season Award, recognizing the outstanding college football lineman of the year.
Watch List Additions:
The Executive Committee, when appropriate, will add players to the Rotary Lombardi Award® Watch List (based upon performance and criteria as stated in the Eligibility and Criteria section above) without prejudice up to the commencement of voting by the Rotary Lombardi Award® National Selection Committee.
Composition of the Distinguished National Selection Committee:
The Rotary Lombardi Award® National Selection Committee consists of over 500 esteemed sports writers, analysts, and commentators who cover college football on a national, regional, or conference level, past RLA alumni including winners and finalists, and head coaches. The Executive Committee does not vote, have never voted, nor affect the voting process.
Secret and Secure Ballot and Voting Integrity:
The Executive Committee does not reveal the vote of any individual selection committee member; however, any selection committee member may reveal his or her own vote. All votes will be submitted electronically via a secure online ballot voting system supervised by a prominent CPA firm.
The Executive Committee does not publicly comment on specific voting results regarding any player or candidate, beyond reporting the identity of the semi-finalists, the finalists, and the winner.
The Executive Committee has immense respect for the wisdom of the voters of the National Selection Committee, considered one of the best in college sports. The Executive Committee provides a highly detailed ballot through which the will of the voters can be fully expressed.
The voting process will follow this schedule.
October 24 - 31, 2022: Vote to determine Semi-finalists
November 2, 2022: Semi-finalists announcement
November 4 – 14, 2022: Vote to determine Four Finalists
November 17, 2022: Four Finalists announcement
November 18 – December 5, 2022: Final vote to determine winner
December 7, 2022: Rotary Lombardi Award® Winner announced