NFF Names two Hawkeyes to Hampshire Honor Society

May 9, 2013

IOWA CITY, Iowa – Steve Bigach and James Vandenberg, senior members of the 2012 University of Iowa football team, have been named to the National Football Foundation Hampshire Honor Society.

Now in its seventh year, the Hampshire Society recognizes senior football players who are starters or significant reserves, and carry a cumulative grade point average of 3.20 or higher (on a 4.0 scale) throughout their college career. The NFF recognized over 700 players from 259 college football programs at all levels. The entire list can be found on the National Football Foundation website,

Bigach, a defensive lineman, is a native of Cleveland, Ohio. He earned his degree in environmental science with 3.67 GPA. He earned academic All-Big Ten honors in 2010, 2011 and 2012. He was named to the Capital One District VI Academic All-America team for the second straight year and received the Forest Evashevski Scholastic Achievement Award following the 2012 season.

Bigach started all 12 games as a senior, playing both defensive end and tackle. He recorded 17 solo tackles and 21 assists, including 1.5 tackle for loss and two forced fumbles.

Vandenberg is a native of Keokuk, Iowa. He carried a 3.36 GPA and earned his degree in health and human physiology. Vandenberg earned academic All-Big Ten honors in each of the last four years. He was named to the Capital One District VI Academic All-America team as a junior and senior. He was Iowa’s recipient of the Big Ten Sportsmanship award this past season and was named a permanent team captain.

Vandenberg started all 12 games in 2012 and 25 consecutive games over his final two seasons. He took every offensive snap for the Hawkeyes as a senior. His career totals include completing 507-of-888 pass attempts for 5,786 yards and 35 touchdowns. He ranks among Iowa’s career leaders in each of the four categories. Vandenberg signed an NFL free agent contract with the Minnesota Vikings following the 2013 NFL draft.

The Hampshire Honor Society represents a powerful component in the NFF’s rich history as an innovator in promoting the scholar-athlete ideal. Since its inception in 1959, The NFF’s National Scholar-Athlete Awards program has awarded $10.1 million to 771 top scholars and community leaders.