Notre Dame Fighting Irish - Official Athletics Website

Hayes Named To Wuerffel Trophy Watch List

NOTRE DAME, Indiana — University of Notre Dame defensive lineman graduate student Daelin Hayes has been selected to the 2020 Wuerffel Trophy Watch List. The Wuerffel Trophy is known as “College Football’s Premier Award for Community Service.”

Hayes has made an impact in the community in a number of ways during his time at Notre Dame. Most recently, Hayes led the organization of a rally in honor of Juneteenth on the Notre Dame campus. Hayes spearheaded the charge in organizing the event in roughly 72 hours, and was one of the main speakers at the rally. 

Prior to his recent work, Hayes has been actively involved in the Robinson Community Learning Center (, an educational initiative jointly operated by the University of Notre Dame and the Northeast Neighborhood residents of South Bend. Hayes taught a twice-weekly class last fall at the Center, working with 4th and 5th graders on how to resolve conflicts in a healthy manner. 

Hayes is also a leader at team community service events, including Shop With A Player (team members take children from local schools and the Pokagon Band shopping for Christmas presents), Football & The Force (charity softball game between Notre Dame football and local law enforcement officers), Saint Mary’s College Dance Marathon to benefit Riley Hospital for Children, Roof Sit to prevent child abuse in St. Joseph County. 

During recent times, Hayes has emerged as a vocal advocate for racial justice in America, sharing his thoughts on social media, while also addressing both his teammates and the entire athletics department staff. 

Other volunteer efforts include: 

  • Food Bank of Northern Indiana (weekly in 2018) 
  • South Bend Center for the Homeless (weekly 2018-19)
  • Boys & Girls Club of St. Joseph County (weekly in 2018)
  • Facilitator at Notre Dame Summer Bridge Program (2019) helping new freshman student-athletes begin at college
  • Kindness to Prevent Blindness helping underprivileged youth get eye exams and glasses
  • Ambassador for Irish Strong mental health initiative for student-athletes
  • A representative for Fighting Irish Fight for Life program which sees teams adopt children fighting a rare disease
  • Volunteer to read weekly at Studebaker Elementary School (first graders)
  • Mentor at the South Bend Juvenile Detention Center.

Hayes has been a mainstay on the defensive line for the Irish over his career, totaling 78 tackles, including 14.5 tackles for loss, over 41 games played. His 2019 season was cut short due to a shoulder injury after playing in the first four games of the campaign.

Hayes has graduated from Notre Dame with a major in Film, Television & Theatre from the College of Arts & Letters and will be competing as a graduate student this fall.

The Fighting Irish recently have had a Wuerffel Trophy recipient, as Drue Tranquill earned the honor in 2018.

About the Wuerffel Trophy

The Wuerffel Trophy, known as “College Football’s Premier Award for Community Service,” is presented each February in Fort Walton Beach, Florida. Named after 1996 Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback Danny Wuerffel from the University of Florida, the Wuerffel Trophy is awarded to the FBS player that best combines exemplary community service with athletic and academic achievement.

Semifinalists for the award will be announced Nov. 3 and finalists will be announced Nov. 23. The formal announcement of the 2020 recipient will be made at the National Football Foundation’s festivities in New York City on December 8. The presentation of the 2020 Wuerffel Trophy will occur at the 52nd All Sports Association Awards Banquet on Feb. 5, 2020, in Fort Walton Beach.

Past winners of the award are: Rudy Niswanger, LSU, 2005; Joel Penton, Ohio State, 2006; Paul Smith, Tulsa, 2008; Tim Tebow, Florida, 2008; Tim Hiller, Western Michigan, 2009; Sam Acho, Texas, 2010; Barrett Jones, Alabama, 2011; Matt Barkley, USC, 2012; Gabe Ikard, Oklahoma, 2013; Deterrian Shackelford, Ole Miss, 2014; Ty Darlington, Oklahoma, 2015; Trevor Knight, Texas A&M, 2016; Courtney Love, Kentucky, 2017; Drue Tranquill, Notre Dame, 2018; Joe Wassink, Western Michigan, 2019.

About the National College Football Awards Association

The Wuerffel Trophy is a member of the National College Football Awards Association (NCFAA), which encompasses the most prestigious awards in college football. Founded in 1997, the NCFAA and its 25 awards now boast over 800 recipients, dating to 1935. Visit to learn more about the association.

Following is the 2020 preseason watch list calendar:

Monday July 13: Chuck Bednarik Award (Kyle Hamilton, Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah)
Tuesday July 14: Davey O’Brien Award (Ian Book)
Monday July 20: Butkus Award (Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah)
Tuesday July 21: Outland Trophy (Aaron Banks, Liam Eichenberg, Jarrett Patterson)
Tuesday, July 21: Nagurski Award (Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah, Drew White)
Wednesday July 22: Groza Award (Jonathan Doerer)
Thursday July 23: Wuerffel Trophy (Daelin Hayes)
Friday July 24: Maxwell Award