NEW ORLEANS - After introducing Kelly Clarkson Monday evening to an appreciative throng at the sixth annual Allstate Sugar Bowl Fan Fest, Northwestern State senior linebacker Yaser Elqutub will be in the spotlight during halftime of Tuesday night's Sugar Bowl in a feature on the Allstate AFCA Good Works Team.
Elqutub will be a focal point of the halftime introduction of the Good Works Team. Last month, he was introduced as the captain of the 2011 Good Works Team, a 22-member squad chosen earlier last fall for remarkable community service and leadership.
The team includes Heisman Trophy winner Robert Griffin III of Baylor. Elqutub was selected as team captain by fans over several weeks following the announcement of the Good Works Team roster in late September. Allstate Insurance Company and the American Football Coaches Association, which initiated the Good Works Team program 20 years ago to expand promotion of the Good Works Team by election of a team captain.
Along with the other Good Works Team members, Elqutub participated Monday afternoon in a special community service project, conducting a football clinic for area youth at Tad Gormley Stadium through the YMCA of Greater New Orleans. Later, as the Good Works Team captain, he was the last member introduced at the Allstate Sugar Bowl Fan Fest in Jackson Square Monday evening and had the honor of introducing Clarkson, the former American Idol champion entertainer.
Elqutub's far-reaching community service activities last year won him the 2010-11 Southland Conference Steve McCarty Citizenship Award. He was also chosen a 2011 Capitol One Academic All-American as one of 16 National Scholar-Athletes and received an $18,000 postgraduate scholarship at the National Football Foundation's Annual Awards Dinner at the Waldorf Astoria in New York City.
He was recently honored as the Central
Louisiana Sportsman of the Year by the Alexandria Town Talk newspaper.
Elqutub, who graduated last month with a 3.85 grade point average in scientific inquiry in the Louisiana Scholars' College at Northwestern, was a two-year starting linebacker for the Demons after beginning his career as a walk-on. He finished with 121 career tackles and was elected a permanent team captain by his teammates.
Among Elqutub's community service activities, he has mentored youth through the Natchitoches Parish Sheriff's Office's Families in Need of Services (FINS) program, and planned a series of campus events last April to benefit Samaritan's Feet, an international organization that provides shoes and feet washings for children in third world countries.
Elqutub, a medical school applicant, has volunteered at local medical facilities to gain experience while helping others. He is the two-term president of the NSU Student-Athlete Advisory Committee, and the Southland Conference SAAC, attending the last two NCAA Conventions to represent his peers around the conference.
He has participated in events such as Alzheimer's Awareness Walk, the Green NSU City-wide Clean Up, the March of Dimes Fundraiser, Doves Spring Clothes Drive, and has been active with the Boys and Girls Club of El Camino Real and Operation Support Our Troops. Elqutub has visited area schools, contributed to a letter writing campaign supporting St. Jude Children's Hospital.
He served on the 2010-11 NCAA Certification Committee as a member of the Commitment to Equity subcommittee. Elqutub was the featured speaker at the 2011 DARE Team Summit, co-grand marshal of the 85th Annual Natchitoches Christmas Festival Junior Parade, and was the featured speaker at the 2010 NSU Freshman Convocation.
Elqutub was voted by his fellow students as the 2010 NSU Homecoming King. He established the Demon Dodgeball club and spearheaded it becoming a university club sport.