Gruber a candidate for Harlon Hill Trophy

FLORENCE, Ala. – Senior inside linebacker Michael Gruber has been named one of 36 candidates for the Harlon Hill Trophy, which is awarded annually to the top college football player in Division II.

Gruber, who is Brevard’s all-time leading tackler with 392 stops and ranks second in career tackles among active Division II players, is one of six nominees from Super Region 2, which encompasses the South Atlantic Conference, Gulf South Conference, Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference, and football-playing independents from across the Southeast.

Two candidates from each of the four Super Regions will be named finalists for the award when regional voting concludes on November 28. Division II Sports Information Directors at all 168 football-playing institutions will have the opportunity to vote for the national winner, which will be announced via webcast on December 19. The Harlon Hill Trophy recipient for the 2014 season will then be honored with a luncheon on the campus of the University of North Alabama in Florence, Alabama on January 9, 2015.

Gruber wrapped up a remarkable career with the Tornados by leading the conference and ranking fourth in Brevard history with 113 tackles, giving him three of the top four tackling seasons in school history. He was named first team all-South Atlantic Conference by the league office on Wednesday.

Gruber had six games this season of at least tackles and reached 15 tackles on three occasions. He tied a career high with 19 stops against then-No. 21 Carson-Newman on September 20, the same day that he became Brevard’s all-time tackling leader. Gruber also picked off a pass against the Eagles and added a forced fumble and a fumble recovery in Brevard’s game against Newberry on November 1.

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