The James J. Corbett Award

The Corbett Award was created in 1967 and named in honor of the late James J. Corbett to commemorate his many contributions to intercollegiate athletics and specifically to the Sugar Bowl. At the time of his death, Mr. Corbett was the Athletic Director at Louisiana State University. These awards are presented annually to the most outstanding amateur male and female athletes in the State of Louisiana. The Corbett recipients are selected each year by members of the N.O. Sports Hall of Fame Committee, based on nominations submitted by the state’s sportswriters, sportscasters and sports information directors.

Since its inception in 1967 (through 2020), Corbett Award winners include 18 NFL players, eight Major League Baseball players, four NBA players (including two Hall of Famers), eight Olympians (including seven Gold Medal winners), three WNBA players and one PGA Tour star.

  • 2000: Brad Cresse, LSU Baseball
  • 2000: Peta-Gaye Dowdie, LSU Track & Field (Olympian)
  • 1999: Tim Rattay, Louisiana Tech Football (NFL)
  • 1998: Shaun King, Tulane Football (NFL)
  • 1997: Brandon Larson, LSU Baseball (MLB)
  • 1996: Warren Morris, LSU Baseball (MLB)
  • 1995: Kerry Joseph, McNeese State Football (NFL)
  • 1994: Russ Johnson, LSU Baseball (MLB)
  • 1993: Todd Walker, LSU Baseball (MLB)
  • 1992: Shaquille O’Neal, LSU Basketball (NBA, Olympic Gold)
  • 1991: Shaquille O’Neal, LSU Basketball (NBA, Olympic Gold)
  • 1990: Esther Jones, LSU Track & Field (Olympic Gold)
  • 1989: Chris Jackson, LSU Basketball (NBA)
  • 1988: Teresa Weatherspoon, Louisiana Tech Basketball (WNBA, Olympic Gold)
  • 1987: Marc Zeno, Tulane Football
  • 1986: Eun Jung Lee, Northeast Louisiana Basketball
  • 1985: Lauri Young, Northeast Louisiana Track & Field
  • 1984: Kim Mulkey, Louisiana Tech Basketball (Olympic Gold)
  • 1983: Buford Jordan, McNeese State Football (NFL)
  • 1982: Alan Risher, LSU Football (NFL)
  • 1981: Pam Kelly, Louisiana Tech Basketball (WBB Hall of Fame)
  • 1980: Hal Sutton, Centenary Golf (PGA)
  • 1979: Roch Hontas, Tulane Football
  • 1978: Charles Alexander, LSU Football (NFL)
  • 1977: Doug Williams, Grambling Football (NFL)
  • 1976: Terry Robiskie, LSU Football (NFL)
  • 1975: Robert Parish, Centenary Basketball (NBA Hall of Fame)
  • 1974: Terry Kieffer, UNO Baseball
  • 1973: Rodney Milburn, Southern Track & Field (Olympic Gold)
  • 1972: Bert Jones, LSU Football (NFL)
  • 1971: Rodney Milburn, Southern Track & Field (Olympic Gold)
  • 1970: Rick Kingrea, Tulane Football (NFL)
  • 1969: Pete Maravich, LSU Basketball (NBA Hall of Fame)
  • 1968: Pete Maravich, LSU Basketball (NBA Hall of Fame)
  • 1967: Nelson Stokley, LSU Football

Photo Courtesy of LSU Athletics

LSU Stars Sweep Corbett Awards as State’s Top Amateur Athletes

LSU gymnast Sarah Finnegan and Tiger football star Devin White have been selected as the winners of the Corbett Awards for the top female and male amateur athletes in the state of Louisiana for 2018-19. It is the ninth time that LSU has swept the honors since separate male and female awards were instituted in 2000. The duo are the 40th and 41st Tiger stars to earn the honor in the 53 years that it has been presented.

Finnegan, a senior from Lee’s Summit, Mo., is considered the greatest gymnast in LSU history and one of the best student-athletes to ever wear the Purple and Gold. She is a two-time NCAA bars champion, the only one on the event in school history and just the fourth gymnast in LSU history to win multiple national championships. After closing her career with 23 All-America honors, she was honored as the 2019 AAI Award winner – that award goes to the top senior gymnast in the nation.

White, who was the winner of the 2018 Butkus Award as college football’s top linebacker, led the Tigers with 123 tackles and 12.0 tackles for loss in helping LSU to a 10-3 overall mark and a victory in the PlayStation Fiesta Bowl on January 1 against UCF. White was a consensus All-America as well as being a first team All-SEC selection. He also had three sacks, six pass break-ups and three forced fumbles. He was selected No. 5 overall in the 2019 NFL Draft by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

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