April 19, 2012
AUSTIN, Texas – Former Texas Longhorns linebacker Emmanuel Acho has been named a male finalist for the 2012 Arthur Ashe Jr. Sports Scholar Award, Diverse: Issues In Higher Education magazine announced on Wednesday. The award honors undergraduate students of color who exemplify the standards set by tennis great Arthur Ashe, Jr.
Acho graduated in December with a Sport Management degree and a 3.44 GPA. A three-time first-team Academic All-Big 12 selection, Acho was also named a 2011-12 Capital One Academic All-District 7 team member and is a seven-time member of the UT Athletics Director’s Honor Roll. He was also named the football team’s 2011 Academic MVP. Acho was honored as an Arthur Ashe Jr. Sports Scholar in 2010 and 2011. Acho was named a member of the 2011 Allstate AFCA Good Works Team, and also this past season was a Campbell Trophy semifinalist and a finalist for the Lowe's Senior CLASS Award.
Acho and his family have made numerous medical mission trips to his parents’ native country of Nigeria, where they hope to build a permanent hospital facility. He is a regular speaker to Fellowship of Christian Athletes groups and visited the Dell Children’s Medical Center of Central Texas each Friday before home games.
Acho played in 48 career games (26 starts) and registered 278 tackles (159 solo), eight sacks, 41 TFL, two INT (one TD return), 13 PBU, seven forced fumbles, three fumble recoveries and 26 quarterback pressures. In 2011, he led the Longhorns with 131 tackles (65 solo), three sacks, 19 TFL, one forced fumble, six PBU and 18 quarterback pressures.
Acho’s brother, Sam, was a finalist for the Arthur Ashe Jr. Sports Scholar Award in 2010.
A scholar and athlete, Arthur Ashe, Jr., sought to expand opportunities for young people. Each year Diverse: Issues In Higher Education invites every postsecondary institution in the country to participate in this awards program by nominating their outstanding sports scholars. In addition to their athletic ability, students named Arthur Ashe Jr. Sports Scholars must exhibit academic excellence as well as community activism.
To be included, students have to compete in an intercollegiate sport; maintain a cumulative grade-point average of at least 3.2; and be active on their campuses or in their communities. This year the NCAA partnered with Diverse to present this standout class of scholar athletes and approximately 600 male and female students from across the country were nominated. Ten male and female finalists are chosen to win the award for their respective gender. The winners will be profiled in the May 24, 2012 edition of the magazine.