Joe Dineen Jr., named finalist for 2018 Senior CLASS Award
LAWRENCE, Kan. – Kansas linebacker Joe Dineen Jr., was one of 10 NCAA® Football Bowl Subdivision student-athletes selected Wednesday as a finalist for the 2018 Senior CLASS Award® in collegiate football. To be eligible for the award, a student-athlete must be classified as an NCAA Division I FBS senior and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence: community, classroom, character and competition.
An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School®, the Senior CLASS Award focuses on the total student-athlete and encourages students to use their platform in athletics to make a positive impact as leaders in their communities.
Dineen, who currently leads the FBS and Big 12 in solo tackles (8.6 pg) and ranks second in the Big 12 in total tackles (11.9), was a Sports Illustrated Midseason First Team All-American. In his last game, Dineen tied to the Kansas all-time tackles-for-loss record as he currently has 41.0 TFLs in his KU career. Dineen was named a Sports Illustrated Second Team All-American and an All-Big 12 First Team honoree in 2017. He was named Big 12 Defensive Player of the Week and the Lott IMPACT Trophy Player of the Week after helping lead the Jayhawks to a 31-7 win at Central Michigan in September.
The Lawrence, Kansas native earned his bachelor’s degree in management and leadership with an entrepreneurship concentration in May 2018. Dineen is a two-time Academic All-Big 12 Second Team honoree, an Academic All-Big 12 Rookie Team award winner and he also earned Big 12 Commissioner’s Honor Roll and KU Athletics Director’s Honor Roll four times during his KU career.
Dineen is one of just three players in Kansas’ 128 years of football to be voted a team captain three times. He has been named a team captain in each of the last three seasons and has also been selected to represent the Jayhawks at Big 12 Media Days in each of those same three seasons.
On top of all of his athletic and academic achievements, Dineen has been very active in numerous community service initiatives across the Lawrence community, including being on the KU football Team Impact Leadership Team and serving as a mentor for Tayber Witt. In addition, he has played a large role in KU football’s elementary school reading program, children’s football clinics, Special Olympics football clinics and feeding the homeless with JustFood, but he really found his passion raising funds and awareness for childhood cancer research. He has been involved in numerous events and activities related to raising awareness for childhood cancer awareness in and around Lawrence and Kansas City.
Dineen has also been tabbed as a quarterfinalist for the Lott IMPACT Trophy and is is being considered for the Bednarik Award for the national defensive player of the year. in addition, he is Kansas’ nominee for the AFCA Good Works Team (community service) and Wuerffel Trophy (community service).
The finalists were chosen by a selection committee from the list of 30 candidates announced earlier in the season. Nationwide fan voting begins immediately to help select the winner, and fans are encouraged to vote on the Senior CLASS Award website through December 5. Fan votes will be combined with media and Division I head coaches’ votes to determine the winner. The Senior CLASS Award winner will be announced during the football bowl season in early January.