Sydney University Football Club players Jeremy Tilse and Pat McCutheon collected two of the main awards at the recent Rugby Union Players’ Association (RUPA) presentations.
Tilse, the SUFC and NSW Waratahs prop, was presented with the Academic Achievement Award for 2014, while SUFC and Waratahs flanker McCutcheon was presented with the Community Service Award.
The Academic Achievement Award is presented to a professionally contracted Australian player who has undertaken and excelled in any level of education, personal or professional development.
Always proactive in his approach to learning, Tilse this year completed an Advanced Diploma of Management, adding to his line-up of off-field endeavours, including a Certificate IV in Building and Construction that he has previously accomplished. He has also obtained a pilot’s licence.
The Academic Achievement Award recognises players who have achieved in areas outside of rugby and juggled off-field development with the full-time responsibilities required as a professional player. SUFC’s Tom Kingston won the 2013 award and was nominated again this year along with SUFC and Melbourne Rebels halfback Nick Phipps.
McCutcheon’s Community Service Award was a result of the time and effort he dedicated to community activities in NSW metropolitan and regional areas, having grown up in Narromine. He is also an ambassador of the Raise Foundation, and supports several charities including Save our Sons, Batyr – One Sock One Goal and the Cure Brain Cancer Foundation.
SUFC and Western Force hooker Nathan Charles was also nominated for the award.
SUFC and Melbourne Rebels centre Mitch Inman, and SUFC and Western Force backrower Ben McCalman were nominees for the 2014 Medal for Excellence award, while SUFC and NSW fullback Israel Folau, SUFC and NSW five-eighth Bernard Foley and Western Force’s Ben McCalman were nominees for the People’s Choice Award.
SUFC winger Greg Jeloudev and SUFC flanker Ed Jenkins were nominated for the Men’s Sevens Players’ Player award. Both are members of the Australian Sevens team.