Updated: Sep 26, 2021
VERMILLION, S.D.—South Dakota senior defensive tackle DeValon Whitcomb has been named to the 2021 Allstate AFCA Good Works Team announced Friday.
Whitcomb is one of 22 players in all of college football selected to the team. Eleven spots are dedicated to players from the FBS level and the other 11 are divided amongst FCS, NCAA Divisions II and III, and NAIA programs.
In addition, Whitcomb was one of four players highlighted in a video by Allstate who announced the recipients would be given $10,000 to be put towards the charity of their choice. The surprise announcement came in a recent Zoom call with former NFL players Emmanuel Acho and Tim Tebow. Vanderbilt linebacker Elijah McAllister, Clemson running back Darien Rencher and USC quarterback Mo Hasan were the other players highlighted on the call.
"To be named as a member of the 2021 Allstate AFCA Good Works Team is truly a blessing," said Whitcomb, who hails from Omaha, Nebraska. "We don't do the work that we do for our communities for awards or recognitions. We do it because it's the right thing to do and because it impacts so many lives. But when recognition comes, it means so much."
"This is just the beginning of my community service work, and with the help from Allstate, I will be able to do so much more in the communities that I am involved in. I am grateful to be one of 22 players selected and even more grateful to be a spokesperson for this team and organization."
Allstate is pledging $1 million to honor the Team, as well as their non-profits of choice, for their remarkable commitment to community service. Made possible by the new NCAA Name Image Likeness (NIL) rules, Allstate has an opportunity to financially empower athletes who serve their communities, opening the door to new possibilities for players and beyond.
"Every year, the Allstate AFCA Good Works Team embodies the best of college athletics," said Acho, a former linebacker, television analyst and 2011 Good Works alumnus. "These players have a positive impact in society. To be named to the Allstate AFCA Good Works Team is an honor. By rewarding these players for the impact they have on their communities, Allstate is truly demonstrating its commitment to making a difference across the country."
Whitcomb earned his bachelor's degree in exercise science back in 2019 and has spent his last two years on a master's program filled with management classes for sports and non-profit organizations.
Whitcomb has served as chapter president for Omega Psi Phi Fraternity. He continues to be involved with a mentoring program for Omaha North High School and volunteers for Special Olympics and the Boys and Girls Club. He has worked with The Simple Foundation since March of 2020. That Foundation strives to provide opportunities for underserved youth programming that cultivate life skills and promote physical and emotional well-being.
Story By: Bryan Boettcher, USD Sports Information