Hampshire Honor Society

Behind the leadership of Jon Hanson, the emeritus chairman of the National Football Foundation, a total of 882 players from 280 schools qualified for membership in 2016, the society’s 10th year, setting a new record for the number of players represented in the history of the program, which began in 2007. The total of 882 players in the 2016 class is the most in the program’s history, eclipsing the 838 honored in 2014. The number of schools represented ties a record that was set in 2015.

“We continue to raise the bar each year for the number of student-athletes who qualify for membership in the Hampshire Honor Society,” said NFF President & CEO
 Steve Hatchell. “The Hampshire Honor Society plays an important role in highlighting that college football players clearly play a leadership role in the classroom as well as on the playing field. We congratulate each of these young men for their commitment to excellence.”

Designed to highlight football’s unique ability to develop tomorrow’s brightest leaders, The NFF Hampshire Honor Society honors the college football players from all divisions of play who each maintain a 3.2 GPA or better during their collegiate careers. Looking to build on his legacy in promoting the scholar-athlete ideal, Hanson endowed in perpetuity the NFF Hampshire Honor Society through his real estate company, The Hampshire Companies, and its charitable arm, The Hampshire Foundation, in 2007. Since its inception, 6,634 student-athletes have earned membership, including 882 in 2016, 825 in 2015, 838 in 2014, 711 in 2013, 721 in 2012, 687 in 2011, 620 in 2010, 564 in 2009, 441 in 2008 and 345 in 2007.

“Ever since legendary Army coach Red Blaik provided the first funds for the first National Scholar-Athlete Awards in 1959, the NFF has stood in the vanguard of promoting the scholar-athlete ideal,” said Hanson, the chairman and founder of The Hampshire Companies when he endowed the program. “It’s a great privilege to build on his legacy and endow The NFF Hampshire Honor Society, which greatly increases the number of the college student-athletes that the NFF can recognize each year. Nationwide, there are thousands of football players excelling in the classroom, and they’re going on to be great leaders. The NFF Hampshire Honor Society allows us to shine a light on their hard work.”

As NFF Chairman, Hanson transformed the organization with new procedures for governance and management. His many initiatives included launching Play It Smart, the NFF’s highly successful youth mentoring program for at-risk kids; spearheading an endowment campaign for the NFF’s prestigious National Scholar-Athlete Awards; and instituting the Divisional Hall of Fame program, which provides for induction of coaches and players from the divisional ranks of college football.

“During his 12 years as our chairman, Jon Hanson created a lasting legacy,” said NFF President & CEO
Hatchell. “It’s fitting that we are able to honor hundreds of college players each year in his company’s name because he has done so much to educate kids over the past several decades.”

Over the past 50 years, Hanson has built a stellar reputation in the business world. Under his leadership and entrepreneurial spirit, The Hampshire Companies has created a national real estate portfolio of more than $2 billion, and his reputation has earned him positions on numerous boards, including Prudential Financial Corp., Yankee Global Enterprises, CD&L, Pascack Community Bank and as chairman of the board of HealthSouth Corp. In addition, Hanson served as NFF Chairman for 12 years and currently as NFF Chairman Emeritus. In 2005, the NFF honored him with its Gold Medal, the organization’s highest honor, for his contributions to our country and college football.

Qualifications for membership in the NFF Hampshire Honor Society include:

  • Being a starter or a significant contributor in one's last year of eligibility (or a senior who has declared for the NFL Draft) at an accredited NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision, Football Championship Subdivision, Division II, Division III or an NAIA college or university;
  • Achieving a 3.2 cumulative grade point average throughout entire course of undergraduate study; and
  • Meeting all NCAA- or NAIA-mandated progress towards degree requirements.

2016 Hampshire Honor Society Membership

2015 Hampshire Honor Society Membership
2014 Hampshire Honor Society Membership
2013 Hampshire Honor Society Membership
2012 Hampshire Honor Society Membership
2011 Hampshire Honor Society Membership
2010 Hampshire Honor Society Membership
2009 Hampshire Honor Society Membership
2008 Hampshire Honor Society Membership
2007 Hampshire Honor Society Membership

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