Former Wisconsin and NFL defensive back Troy Vincent was honored by the Big Ten on Wednesday, as he was named the recipient of the 2017 Ford-Kinnick Leadership Award on Wednesday.
The Ford-Kinnick Leadership Award is an annual award that recognizes Big Ten football student-athletes who have garnered success in leadership roles following their academic and athletic careers.
Off the field, Vincent was the president of the NFL Players Association (NFLPA) from 2004-08, and is now serving as the NFL’s Executive Vice President of Football Operations.
He was a standout for @BadgerFootball and in the NFL, now Troy Vincent is making an impact off the field.
— Wisconsin Badgers (@UWBadgers) November 22, 2017
In addition, Vincent remains active in the NFL’s Business Management and Entrepreneurial Program, which he helped form create in the later stages of his professional playing career. Vincent has become a national advocate for victims of domestic violence and sexual abuse, and he and his family been attached to several charitable organizations. Vincent and his family also founded Love Thy Neighbor, which is a foundation that aims to create positive change in the lives of young people.
On top of all of that, Vincent was honored with the NFLPA Byron “Whizzer” White NFL Man of the Year and the Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year in 2002.
On the field, Vincent was a shutdown cornerback both in college and in the pros.
At Wisconsin, he earned a first-team All-American honor in 1991 and was the Big Ten Co-Defensive Player of the Year that same year. In the NFL, Vincent played 15 seasons for five teams. He made the Pro Bowl five times, was a three-time All-Pro honoree and has been nominated for the Pro Football Hall of Fame for the last five years.
The award was created in 2011. Here is the list of past Ford-Kinnick Leadership Award winners:
- 2011: Archie Griffin, Ohio State
- 2012: Jon Runyan, Michigan
- 2013: Gene Washington, Michigan State
- 2014: Mike Hopkins, Illinois
- 2015: Brian Griese, Michigan
- 2016: Reggie McKenzie, Michigan
- 2017: Troy Vincent, Wisconsin
The Big Ten also honored former Iowa linebacker Chad Greenway as the recipient of the 2017 Dungy-Thompson Humanitarian Award.