« FBS Football 2012

Sean Renfree

Public Policy/Humanities


Renfree was honored as one of the top scholar-athletes in Division I football this season when he was named one of 10 recipients of the National Football Foundation Scholar-Athlete Award. Also an Academic All-District III selection, Renfree graduated from Duke in the spring of 2012 with a degree in public policy studies and is currently pursuing a master’s degree in humanities. He posted a GPA of 3.4 as an undergrad and currently holds a 3.81 GPA in his graduate school program. He is also a two-time member of the Academic All-ACC Football Team and a four-time member of the ACC Academic Honor Roll.


Renfree is a quintessential representative not only of the Duke football program, but of Duke University. He successfully manages to balance the rigors of Duke’s academic demands with the commitment that playing football at the BCS level requires. He is a two-year team captain, and outside of his on-field and classroom accomplishments, Renfree has made an ongoing effort to give back to the Duke community through a number of service projects, including those efforts that he organizes on his own. He has formed relationships with several patients at the Duke Children’s Hospital and families at the Ronald McDonald House.


Renfree was honored with one of the most prestigious community service-based awards in college athletics when he was named one of 11 members on the AFCA Good Works Team. He was also announced as the winner of the Pop Warner National College Football Award, which recognized a Pop Warner alumnus who has gone on to set example for current Pop Warner players in the areas of athletic achievement, academic performance and community service. Renfree is heavily involved in the Durham community, both through projects organized by Duke football and those of his own initiative. Among his community service efforts are the Durham Rescue mission, a non-profit organization that provides food, support and shelter to those in need; Ronald McDonald House Charities, a non-profit public charity that provides rooms, meals and support to families seeking medical treatment in Durham for their children; the Duke Children’s Hospital, where Renfree and a handful of his teammates organize weekly visits to spend time with the ailing children; Active Teens, a program organized through the Duke Children’s Hospital that encourages inactive teens to exercise and live a more healthy lifestyle; and Duke football’s annual Christmas gift wrap, which provides presents to people in need.


Renfree has led Duke to a 6-5 record and bowl eligibility for the first time since Duke’s 1994 season. In his third year as Duke’s starter, he is completing a career-high 67.3 percent of his passes while averaging 232.3 passing yards per game to go with a 1.75:1 touchdown-to-interception ratio. He reached several career milestones this season, including 8,000 passing yards, 800 pass completions and 1,000 pass attempts and will finish his career as the most accurate passer in Duke history with a career completion percentage of 64.4 percent. Additionally, he ranks among the school’s top five all-time in passing yards (4th), pass efficiency rating (2nd), pass completions (2nd), pass attempts (5th) and touchdown-to-interception ratio (5th). Renfree has started 33 games during his career and is on pace to become the first Duke QB to post three consecutive seasons with at least 2,500 passing yards. Named to the Davey O’Brien Award watch list and the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award watch list for 2012, Renfree has thrown a touchdown pass in 25 of his 33 starts.