🏈 Jared Casey Nominated for Burlsworth Trophy
LAWRENCE, Kan. – Kansas junior tight end Jared Casey has been announced as one of 73 college football players nominated for the 2023 Burlsworth Trophy. Now in its 14th year, the Burlsworth Trophy is presented to the most outstanding player in FBS football who began his career as a walk-on.
The trophy is named in honor of Brandon Burlsworth, the former University of Arkansas walk-on and All-American offensive lineman. Without one Division I scholarship offer, Burlsworth walked on at the Arkansas in 1994, became 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 who have limited opportunities.
Casey walked on at Kansas in the fall of 2020 following a standout three-sport prep career in Plainville, Kansas. He redshirted during the 2020 season and appeared in nine games in 2021, primarily on special teams before KU visited Texas late in the season. In overtime at UT, Casey hauled in the game-winning two-point conversion as Kansas upset the Longhorns 57-56 for the program’s first-ever road win at Texas.
Since that time, Casey has been an offensive staple for the Jayhawks. He closed out the 2021 season with eight receptions for 101 yards and two touchdowns, one in each of KU’s final two games. Casey was placed on scholarship in the spring of 2022 and then started seven games for the Jayhawks in the 2022 season, recording 18 receptions for 224 yards and four touchdowns.
This fall, Casey has started five games at tight end and hauled in five receptions for 57 yards, including a five-yard touchdown in KU’s 34-23 win over Illinois on Sept. 8. He’s also a valued blocker from his tight end position and widely regarded as having the best pass-catching hands on the team.
The Burlsworth Trophy award ceremony to honor the three finalists and to announce the 2023 winner will be on December 4, at 7:00pm CST at Crystal Bridges Museum in Bentonville, Arkansas.