BU Football Player Named Finalist for 2020 Armed Forces Merit Award

Photo available by request. Contact Dave Leisering


For Immediate Release

Date: Oct. 28, 2020

Contact: Dave Leisering, Director of Sports Information




Bloomsburg University Football Player Named Finalist for 2020 Armed Forces Merit Award


BLOOMSBURG—Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania senior football player Alex Findura (Stockbridge, Ga./Woodland) has been named a finalist for the 2020 Armed Forces Merit Award, presented each year by the Football Writers Association of America (FWAA). It marks the second consecutive year that Findura has been a finalist for the prestigious honor. Findura is the only repeat finalist from last year.

Findura joins Colin O'Donnell from Bluefield State College of Virginia as the only student-athletes named finalists for the 2020 award. University of Georgia defensive backs coach Charlton Warren is the third individual advancing to the final voting round. Last year, Findura was one of five finalists for the Armed Forces Merit Award, with Army West Point assistant coach Mike Viti claiming the award.

A total of 38 individuals and three programs were nominated for the 2020 Armed Forces Merit Award. The list included eight collegiate players, 14 college coaches, 14 college and university administrators, and two college referees.

Last month, Findura added to his growing list of accolades by becoming the first player from Bloomsburg University to be named to the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) Allstate Good Works Team®. He was one of 22 student-athletes across the country - throughout all divisions - to earn that honor.

Before his arrival to Bloomsburg, Findura served four years in the United States Marines, where he was a member of an elite team known as the Body Bearers. The section's primary mission is to bear the caskets at funerals for Marines, former Marines, and Marine family members at Arlington National Cemetery and the surrounding cemeteries in the National Capital Region. On occasion, the group travels around the country to support funerals for senior statesmen, heads of state, and former Presidents of the United States.

In November 2018, Findura was featured on ESPN's College GameDay as part of its annual Veterans' Day coverage.

A business management major with a 3.52 cumulative grade point average, Findura also serves as a volunteer firefighter, coaches a youth football team, and routinely participates in on-campus organizations to help make the campus – and the community – a better place.

On the field, Findura earned All-PSAC First Team accolades and Don Hansen All-Region Third Team honors in 2019 after enjoying a breakout season with the Huskies. He collected 57 tackles, including a team-leading 16.5 tackles for loss and a team-best 7.0 sacks. He also tied for the team lead with five pass breakups and added a team-high four quarterback hurries. Findura posted at least one tackle for a loss in nine games and had a career-best 12 tackles against Stonehill in 2019. Findura has 73 tackles in his career, with 22.0 tackles for a loss and 9.5 total sacks.

He was named the PSAC East Defensive Player of the Week on Oct. 21, 2019, after helping the Huskies to a 22-17 road victory against East Stroudsburg. Findura finished with five tackles, 2.5 sacks, and 2.5 tackles for a loss. Findura also added a safety in the win - Bloomsburg's first safety since Nov. 7, 2005.

The announcement of the 2020 recipient of the Armed Forces Merit Award will be made via an 11 a.m. teleconference on Wednesday, Nov. 11, by Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl Executive Director Brant Ringler and FWAA President Matt Fortuna.

About the Armed Forces Merit Award
The Armed Forces Merit Award is presented by the Football Writers Association of America (FWAA) in conjunction with the Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl (LMAFB). The award recipient is officially announced annually on Veteran's Day. The award will be presented to an individual and/or a group who have created, developed, and produced a program within the realm of the sport of football that provides care, concern and support for past or present members of the United States Armed Forces and/or their families.

The Armed Forces Merit Award will be selected by a panel of individuals from the Football Writers Association of America (a minimum of five members) and the Bell Helicopter Armed Forces Bowl (a minimum of two individuals). Nominations will be sought from various groups and associations, including the American Football Coaches Association, The College Sports Information Directors of America, The National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics, The National Football Foundation and College Hall of Fame and USA Football. The nominee's "contribution" will be assessed by reviewing various items, including the completion of a nomination form, supporting documents and letters of recommendation.

When considering an individual and/or group for the Armed Forces Merit Award, a nomination form must be submitted along with letters of support for the individual and/or group. In addition to their military-based program, the nominee for the Bell Lockheed Martin Forces Bowl Merit Award for will also be evaluated on evidence and examples of the following attributes:

 - Authentic, Reliable, Motivating, Enthusiastic, Determined
 - Fair, Organized, Respectful, Committed, Effective, Selfless