Cal sophomore running back Jeffrey Coprich is one of 22 players nationwide selected to the Allstate American Football Coaches Association Good Works Team for dedication to community service.
The honor goes to 11 players from Football Bowl Subdivision teams and 11 from Football Championship Subdivision, Division II, Division III and NAIA teams.
“It’s definitely an honor to be a part of the Good Works Team. I got the text this morning and I was excited. It was a good wakeup call, for sure,” Coprich said after practice Tuesday.
Coprich was honored after establishing the Essence K. Coprich Book Club, in honor of his late sister, at the elementary school she attended in their hometown of Watts.
Essence died at age 7 in a family car accident in 1996 when Jeffrey Coprich was 3 years old. Coprich was so badly injured, his father said in an interview last year, that he was not expected to survive.
Coprich wanted to create the book club to encourage inner-city youngsters to become more capable and enthusiastic readers, giving them a chance to pursue a future in college.
He worked with congresswoman Maxine Waters, the I Am Foundation and the Los Angeles Unified School District to secure a grant to purchase new books for the library at 116th Street Elementary in Watts.
“I want to continue to help out the young kids out there and let them know anything is possible,” Coprich said.
All 22 players will be invited to New Orleans to participate in a community project leading to the 2015 College Football Playoff semifinal at the Allstate Sugar Bowl.
“The Saints are my favorite team so it’s going to be good to be in New Orleans for the first time,” Coprich said.
Coprich, who broke his foot during fall training camp, said he expects to resume practicing soon and hopes to be able to play in Cal’s game against Washington Oct. 11.
Fans can go to ESPN.com/Allstate to vote for the team captain of the 22-man unit.