Outland Trophy Finalist

University of Miami senior center Brett Romberg has been named one of three finalists for the 2002 Outland Trophy, the Football Writers Association of America (FWAA) announced Monday. The award, given since 1946, is awarded annually to the outstanding interior lineman in college football.

Romberg joins Utah offensive tackle Jordan Gross and Washington State defensive tackle Rien Long as finalists for the award. Defensive tackle Russell Maryland became the first University of Miami player to win the coveted award in 1990. Miami offensive tackle Bryant McKinnie joined Maryland on the impressive list of honorees by winning the award in 2001. The winner of the Outland Trophy will be announced on Thursday, Dec. 12, in Orlando as part of the ESPN Home Depot College Football Awards Show from the Atlantic Dance Hall on The Boardwalk at Walt Disney World. The actual presentation of the Outland Trophy by the Greater Omaha Sports Committee will take place at a banquet in Omaha, Nebraska, on January 9, 2003.

Romberg is the nerve center of the most dominant offensive line in college football. He's made the blocking calls for teams that have won 34 of 35 games since the start of the 2000 season. He's performed under pressure against college football's best, been productive in the game's most important contest and excelled in the spotlight. Romberg has helped the Hurricanes' offense set new standards for production the last two seasons while never grading under 88 percent in his blocking assignments in a single game.

A two-time All-BIG EAST selection who was a first-team All-America selection by the Football Writers Association of America this season, Romberg aims to lead the Hurricanes to a second consecutive national championship in 2002. He has not allowed a quarterback sack in his college career, has been named an Offensive MVP by the coaching staff in five games during his UM career, is a three-time First-Team All-BIG EAST performer and was a First-Team All-America by Sportsline.com in 2001. In the classroom, Romberg graduated with a degree in business in December, 2001, and is currently enrolled in graduate school at UM. He has started the last 37 games at center for Miami.