Keith Pough Named 2013 Pat Tillman Award Recipient
At the 88th East-West Shrine Game®, Harold Richardson, executive director, named Keith Pough the 2013 Pat Tillman award recipient. Tillman, a United States Army hero, represents the qualities of the patients at Shriners Hospitals for Children®, who demonstrate courage and perseverance on a daily basis. The award recognizes the recipient’s character and leadership both on and off the football field. When asked about the selection of Pough for the award, West Head Coach Leeman Bennett and manager, Andy Strickland boasted of Pough’s character and leadership – qualities reminiscent of Tillman. “From day one at practice, Pough has been a very vocal leader, encouraging and supporting his teammates...He’s the kind of player coaches like to have on the field.” said Bennett.
Pough, a South Carolina native, was raised with a strong foundation of faith and family, which guided his dream of one day playing in the NFL. Pough attributes his remarkable successes to invaluable life lessons he learned through football, including teamwork, communication, and hard work.
Although many universities competed to secure the 6’3” outside linebacker from Scott’s Branch High School, Pough chose to attend Howard University in Washington, D.C. In an October interview to Draft News, Pough said his decision to attend Howard University was based primarily upon academics with the secondary goal of succeeding in football.
Not long after Pough’s cleats were laced, pads affixed, and helmet secured, this high school all-star began breaking university records and gaining notice. Pough’s accolades include all time lead of tackles of MEAC players, breaking the FCS and Howard University record for tackles for loss, multiple NCAA awards, MEAC and The Sports Network’s Defensive Player of the Week, and now, the Pat Tillman Award.
A physical education major, Pough hopes to follow in his father’s footsteps and become a football coach as well as embarking on his own goal of becoming a teacher. With the success Pough has already achieved, there is no telling what the 2013 Pat Tillman award recipient may achieve.