To be considered for the Rotary Lombardi Award players must be a FCAA FBS I college football team member and meet the following qualifications:
Must be an outstanding player, in any position.
Must show leadership, courage, desire, respect for authority and discipline.
The voting electorate is made up of the head coaches from all FCAA FBS winners and finalists of the Rotary Lombardi Award and current and past members of the Football Writers Association of America. Currently the total number of voters is approximately 400
The Rotary Lombardi Award Watch is released each July. Players that are All-American and All-Conference as voted by the coaches and that meet the criteria for the award are placed on the preliminary Rotary Lombardi Award Watch list.
The Rotary Lombardi Award Watch List is a reference tool for the Selection Committee. It is periodically revised until the first round of voting is completed.
The first round of voting determines the 12 semi-finalists. The second round of voting will determine the four finalists. The final round of voting determines the winner of The annual Rotary Lombardi Award which is announced live each year.