Aside from being a talented football player, Pitt’s Tre Tipton is a special person and we got another reminder of that today as he won a prestigious award.
Tipton has been named the 2019 winner of the Freddie Solomon Community Spirit Award, which is presented annually to a college football player “who has impacted the lives of others through giving and community service.”
Solomon played collegiately at the University of Tampa before having a long NFL career mostly with the San Francisco 49ers. Following his playing career, Solomon moved to Tampa and started a charity named “Fabulous Freddie” and spent the rest of his life working with area youth through the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office outreach program.
Tipton won the award over the other four finalists: Utah defensive back Terrell Burgess, Marshall running back Brenden Knox, Kansas defensive back Bryce Torneden and South Carolina linebacker Spencer Eason-Riddle.
“I am incredibly honored and humbled to receive the Freddie Solomon Community Spirt Award,” Tipton said. “I want to thank Mrs. Solomon and her entire family for selecting me from so many great candidates. Mr. Solomon’s life is an inspiration and I will certainly strive to live up to all that this award means. He impacted the lives of so many kids in Tampa and I hope to follow his example by doing the same thing in Western Pennsylvania and beyond.”
Tipton created L.O.V.E. (Living Out Victoriously Everyday), a program that helps “empower, provide hope and build a community for collegiate student-athletes who are dealing with mental, emotional, and physical struggles” through fellowship and access to professional help. Tipton also volunteers as a mentor at the Waypoint Youth and Community Center, promoting the importance of reading and education at area elementary schools and helping to host Make-A-Wish Foundation children and local veterans groups at Pitt’s football facility.
Tipton was also named to the 2019 Allstate American Football Coaches Association Good Works Team, which recognizes football student-athletes for their leadership in local communities and commitment to giving back. As being a member of the AFCA Good Works Team, Tipton will be honored at this year’s Allstate Sugar Bowl in New Orleans on January 1.
Tipton has graduated from Pitt in four years and is now pursuing graduate studies at Pitt’s School of Social Work.