Dec 11, 2003
LAKE BUENA VISTA, FL. – Iowa offensive tackle Robert Gallery won the Outland Trophy as the nation’s top interior lineman Thursday night.
Recent and past Iowa winners of the Outland Trophy for the outstanding collegiate interior lineman, presented by the College Football Writers Association of America:
2003-Robert Gallery, Iowa, OT
2002-Rien Long, Washington State, DT
2001-Bryant McKinnie, Miami, OT
2000-John Henderson, Tennessee, DT
1999-Chris Samuels, Alabama, OT
1998-Kris Farris, UCLA, G
1997-Aaron Taylor, Nebraska, G
1996-Orlando Pace, Ohio State, OT
1995-Jonathan Ogden, UCLA, OT
1994-Zach Wiegert, Nebraska, OT
1993-Rob Waldrop, Arizona, NG
1992-Will Shields, Nebraska, G
1957-Alex Karras, Iowa, T
1955-Calvin Jones, Iowa, G
Gallery, a 6-foot-7, 320-pound senior, has been the leader on a Hawkeye offensive line that lost four starters from 2002. The Outland Trophy is selected by the Football Writers Association of America.
Gallery beat out Arkansas offensive tackle Shawn Andrews and LSU defensive lineman Chad Lavalais for the honor.
The announcement was made during the Home Depot college football awards show.
Before the announcement, Gallery had few expectations for the award, considering there are no statistics involved with being an offensive linesman.
“It’s up to the nine voters and how much they’ve seen me. It’s somewhat of a political thing,” he said. “It’s an honor to win it.
“As a lineman, all you hear about is the Outland Trophy,” Gallery added. “In my position, that’s what you shoot for. The Heisman is pretty far out there. So this is a big deal.”
Before voting closed on the award named for the late John Outland, who was an All-American lineman at the University of Pennsylvania, Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz gave considerable praise to his star on the offensive line. Gallery served as a captain for all 12 regular season games.
“That was the highest compliment I could get, I think,” said Gallery. “Coming from him, he’s not known for doing that a lot. He doesn’t blow too much smoke around, so that’s the greatest compliment I could get.
“I really respect him for what he’s done for this program and for me as an individual, and it’s a big deal to me to have him say those things because of what he’s been through and the people he’s seen.”
Gallery doesn’t get much of a turnaround as he hits the classroom next week for finals, before going straight back to Floriday — this time to Tampa, as Iowa prepares for the 2004 Outback Bowl, Jan. 1.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.