National Football Foundation asks FWAA members to vote on 2020 College Football Hall of Fame Class

The National Football Foundation has decided this year to provide each FWAA member a complimentary ballot for the 2020 College Football Hall of Fame Class, encouraging you to vote and then write about your selections. Please vote and share your perspective with your readers. Ballots must be submitted by June 21.

  • Click here to access your electronic ballot to vote.
  • Click here to read a pdf version of the NFF Footballetter with bios of the candidates.

 

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Deadline for entries in 2019 Best Writing Contest extended until July 10

The deadline for FWAA members to submit entries in 27th annual Best Writing Contest has been extended until July 10.

CATEGORIES

  • Game Story (Immediate Deadline)
  • Feature Story/Profile
  • Enterprise/Investigative
  • Column/Analysis/Commentary

BEAT WRITER OF THE YEAR AWARD

In addition, see below, we have created a special award for the top beat writer as judged by a special FWAA committee headed by Executive Director Steve Richardson.

WRITING CONTEST RULES

You must be an FWAA member in good standing to enter.

Deadline: July 10, 2019. Entries sent after the deadline WILL NOT BE ACCEPTED.

Limit: One (1) article per category, although a series of articles may be submitted in the enterprise category.

Entries must have appeared in print or on line between Feb. 1, 2018 and Jan. 31, 2019.

Entries must be submitted electronically to contest@fwaa.com.

Entries not sent to this e-mail address will not be accepted

Send MS Word or text files only. DO NOT SEND HTML files, Word Perfect files, stories in other word processing software or links to stories on the Internet or electronic libraries

Make your entry easy to read by taking out unnecessary carriage returns (They can give your entry an odd look when opened by a judge’s word processing program)

Delete any embedded advertising, photos and cutlines from the files (The file should contain only your story and your identifying information)

At the top of each entry, the following information should be included:

  • Writer(s)
  • Publication or online service
  • Category
  • Date of publication
  • E-mail address and telephone number for the writer(s) of the entry

The entries will be sorted and stripped of identifying information and forwarded to the judge(s).

Files containing your entries should follow this naming convention: yourname-category.doc

The category must be one of these four words: Game, Feature, Enterprise or Column

Example: KenStephens-game.doc

FWAA BEAT WRITER OF THE YEAR AWARD: If you have a nomination of a beat writer who covers major college football (either a team or a conference) or you want to nominate yourself, please send an e-mail/letter explaining the qualifications of the person (no more than 250 words) to:

Steve Richardson
FWAA Executive Director
18652 Vista del Sol
Dallas, TX 75287

Steve’s e-mail is tiger@fwaa.com. Steve and his committee will then make inquiries into the FWAA members nominated. In order to qualify for this award the person nominated must have been an FWAA member during the 2018 football season.

Questions? E-mail Ken Stephens at ken.stephens@sbcglobal.net.

Super 11 Recipients Announced for 2018 season

DALLAS — Four first-time winners and seven previous ones comprise the 10th Annual Super 11 Awards, which the Football Writers Association of America gives out annually to the best performing sports information departments in the Football Bowl Subdivision. The awards announced this week are for the 2018 season.

In addition, for the first time the FWAA will present a Super 11 Coach of the Year Award. Arizona State Coach Herm Edwards granted outstanding access to his program during the 2018 season.

“These 11 sports information departments have done an outstanding job of not just fulfilling the needs of media members, but of understanding the importance of strong working relationships between programs and the reporters who cover them,” 2019 FWAA President Matt Fortuna said. “Additionally, Coach Edwards went above and beyond the norm in his first season at Arizona State, a refreshing approach that we feel deserves special recognition.”

As for the 2018 SID department awards, Clemson, Colorado and Nebraska each won for a sixth time. It was Clemson’s fourth straight award and Colorado’s fifth award in six seasons.

Pittsburgh claimed a Super 11 Award for the fourth time and Navy a third time. Iowa State and Mississippi State each won for the second time.

The four first-time recipients in the award series, which dates back to the 2009 season, are Arizona State, Miami, Fla., UAB and Wisconsin.

This year’s winners were deemed by FWAA observers to have had good accessibility during the week of the game and after the game — with a program’s players, coaches and assistant coaches — along with the other listed criteria.

“That was a special point of emphasis in 2018 and will be again in 2019,” FWAA Executive Director Steve Richardson said. “Our membership wants access to players after games, of course, but also for human interest and analytical stories during the week. Over the years, for a variety of reasons this access has been restricted. We believe there are many good stories out there that can be told if they are allowed to be told.”

FWAA members who covered college football during the 2018 season provided input in the awards survey.

In January 2009, the FWAA formed the first Super 11 Committee. The concept has been supported and endorsed by the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA), many of whom are members of the FWAA. The FWAA has awarded Super 11 to 60 different schools in this program over the years.

The Football Writers Association of America, a non-profit organization founded in 1941, consists of more than 1,300 men and women across North America who cover college football for a living. The membership includes journalists, broadcasters and publicists, as well as key executives in all the areas that involve the game. The FWAA works to govern areas that include game-day operations, major awards, a national poll and its annual All-America teams.

Related link:
Super 11 Awards (including complete selection criteria)

Call for entries in the 2019 Best Writing Contest

FWAA members may begin submitting entries in the FWAA’s 27th annual Best Writing Contest now.

CATEGORIES

  • Game Story (Immediate Deadline)
  • Feature Story/Profile
  • Enterprise/Investigative
  • Column/Analysis/Commentary

BEAT WRITER OF THE YEAR AWARD

In addition, see below, we have created a special award for the top beat writer as judged by a special FWAA committee headed by Executive Director Steve Richardson.

WRITING CONTEST RULES

You must be an FWAA member in good standing to enter.

Deadline: June 1, 2019. Entries sent after the deadline WILL NOT BE ACCEPTED.

Limit: One (1) article per category, although a series of articles may be submitted in the enterprise category.

Entries must have appeared in print or on line between Feb. 1, 2018 and Jan. 31, 2019.

Entries must be submitted electronically to contest@fwaa.com.

Entries not sent to this e-mail address will not be accepted

Send MS Word or text files only. DO NOT SEND HTML files, Word Perfect files, stories in other word processing software or links to stories on the Internet or electronic libraries

Make your entry easy to read by taking out unnecessary carriage returns (They can give your entry an odd look when opened by a judge’s word processing program)

Delete any embedded advertising, photos and cutlines from the files (The file should contain only your story and your identifying information)

At the top of each entry, the following information should be included:

  • Writer(s)
  • Publication or online service
  • Category
  • Date of publication
  • E-mail address and telephone number for the writer(s) of the entry

The entries will be sorted and stripped of identifying information and forwarded to the judge(s).

Files containing your entries should follow this naming convention: yourname-category.doc

The category must be one of these four words: Game, Feature, Enterprise or Column

Example: KenStephens-game.doc

FWAA BEAT WRITER OF THE YEAR AWARD: If you have a nomination of a beat writer who covers major college football (either a team or a conference) or you want to nominate yourself, please send an e-mail/letter explaining the qualifications of the person (no more than 250 words) to:

Steve Richardson
FWAA Executive Director
18652 Vista del Sol
Dallas, TX 75287

Steve’s e-mail is tiger@fwaa.com. Steve and his committee will then make inquiries into the FWAA members nominated. In order to qualify for this award the person nominated must have been an FWAA member during the 2018 football season.

Questions? E-mail Ken Stephens at ken.stephens@sbcglobal.net.

Shaun Alexander/FWAA Freshman of the Year Award calls for big things on, and off, the field

By Mike Griffith

AJC-Dawg Nation

CLEMSON, S.C. — Dabo Swinney was having flashbacks during the Clemson spring football game on Saturday with former Alabama and Seattle Seahawks star Shaun Alexander in attendance.

The 2005 NFL MVP was at the Tigers’ spring game to hand off the inaugural Shaun Alexander/FWAA Freshman of the Year Award to Trevor Lawrence. The trophy is presented by Stand Together, a non-profit organization.

Swinney had some fun at Alexander’s expense when his dynamic tailback, Travis Etienne, bounced a run outside to the head coach’s displeasure.

“You don’t have to hit home runs Shaun!” Swinney yelled in Etienne’s direction with Alexander standing beside him. “Sometimes you have to hit singles!”

Former Alabama and NFL running back Shaun Alexander is greeted by Clemson coach Dabo Swinney at the school’s 2019 spring game. Alexander was there to formally present the first Shaun Alexander/FWAA Freshman of the Year Trophy to Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence. Photo by Shane Sandefur.

Former Alabama and NFL running back Shaun Alexander is greeted by Clemson coach Dabo Swinney at the school’s 2019 spring game. Alexander was there to formally present the first Shaun Alexander/FWAA Freshman of the Year Trophy to Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence. Photo by Mike Griffith.

Alexander broke into a grin, knowing the phrase all too well having heard it several times early in his career at Alabama.

Swinney’s coaching career was just lifting off as a graduate assistant under the direction of College Football Hall of Famer Gene Stallings when Alexander signed with the Tide out of Boone County High School in Florence, Ky., and redshirted the 1995 season.

The 1996 season was big for Alexander and Swinney, a coming out party of sorts for both. Swinney was promoted to receivers coach under the direction of then-Tide offensive coordinator Woody McCorvey, who is now Clemson’s associate athletic director for football administration.

Alexander, meanwhile, was competing for playing time in a crowded backfield when he sent shockwaves across the country on Nov. 9, 1996.

Coming off the bench in the second quarter, Alexander took 20 handoffs from then-Alabama QB and now-Cleveland Browns head coach Freddie Kitchens and gained a school-record 291 yards against LSU, scoring four touchdowns in a 26-0 win over the Bayou Bengals.

Gerry DiNardo, the LSU coach at the time, since turned Big Ten Network lead analyst, remembers recognizing Alexander’s greatness when he watch No. 37 slice through a defense that anchored a 10-2 team.

“I can still remember a play starting toward our bench and then him cutting back, and I remember thinking as I watched that this is a special back,” DiNardo said. “He hadn’t started any games, and we didn’t know much about him.

“Anytime you see a great athlete move forward and contribute to our society, it’s a great story, so what started out for me as a bad memory has turned into a very good thing.”

McCorvey knew he had a pretty good thing in Alexander, but not even he could have anticipated that sort of performance.

“For him to do what he did down in the other Death Valley at LSU in Baton Rouge, 291 yards rushing, that was unbelievable,” said McCorvey, who after seeing Alexander score on his only carry of the first half called Alexander’s number 19 more times in the second half.

“That was just the start of it for Shaun, he was able to finish of a tremendous college career and went on to have a stellar NFL career.”

As much as Alexander excelled on the field, he was an exemplary student-athlete off of it, serving as an Alabama chapter Fellowship of Christian Athletes president in 1999, the same year he was named SEC Player of the Year.

Those good works continued off the field, as Alexander started a family foundation in Seattle to mentor young men before his nine-year NFL career and retirement to the Washington, D.C., area with his wife and nine children.

“Shaun was a great representative of Alabama football, the way he carried himself off the field, and of course what an incredible back he was,” said ESPN analyst Kirk Herbstreit, who launched his career on ESPN GameDay in 1996. “I love that the FWAA has come up with an award recognizing a freshman of the year, and how fitting to be able to have a guy like Trevor Lawrence win it in the first year.

“Shaun and Trevor are two great people, two great athletes, and I think we’ll look back at this with Trevor winning a trophy that’s fitting of him and everything he and Shaun represent.”

In addition to the Alexander Trophy, the FWAA Freshman of the Year will receive a gold coin with the following traits displayed on the coin: “Ambassador, Legend, Faith, Passion, Talent, Focus, Character, Leader.”

McCorvey, who mentored Swinney as a receiver and assistant coach and now helps oversee Clemson football, has used many of those same words during his distinguished coaching career.

Former Alabama and NFL running back Shaun Alexander presents the inaugural Shaun Alexander/FWAA Freshman of the Year Trophy to Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence. The formal presentation occurred at Cloemson’s 2019 spring game. Photo by Shane Sandefur.

“Both Shaun and Trevor exemplify class,” McCorvey said. “When I was a part of Shaun’s career at Alabama, his work ethic and everything he put into being a student-athlete was exemplary.

“It’s the same thing with Trevor since he has been here. He’s been all business, he’s carried himself in the right way, and when he got his opportunity last year he handled it well. For him to win this award and win the national championship, that’s what it’s all about.”

Swinney, his arm around Alexander much of the day, agreed.

“Here’s the cool thing, I was there when you were a freshman, and I am here to see you present this award to this great freshman, Trevor,” Swinney told Alexander. “It’s fitting that he’s the first one, you were an amazing freshman; obviously he was too.

“But the great thing is both of you are great people, both of you have strong faiths. I’m honored Trevor won it and you are here to present it.”
Lawrence, born on Oct. 6, 1999, four days after Alexander scored four touchdowns and tallied 200 total yards in a 40-39 road win over a No. 3-ranked Florida team, was humbled to win the award.

“It’s awesome, obviously Shaun was a great player, so to win his award is an honor,” Lawrence said. “I try to lead by example; you can’t ask anyone to do anything that you’re not willing to do.

“My faith plays a big part in leading people, too, and that’s also leading by example. That’s doing the right thing, not just with the team and in workouts, but off the field, too.”

Alexander, his Alabama rooting interests aside, made it clear he’ll be pulling for Lawrence to continue his greatness on and off the field.

“I wanted someone to win this award whose character and faith and talent matched, and Trevor was that guy,” said Alexander, who chose Lawrence for the award before the Clemson phenom completed 20-of-32 passes for 347 yards and three touchdowns in the Tigers’ 44-16 CFP Championship Game win over the Tide.

“I, along with Stand Together and the Football Writers Association of America, will be looking for big things from you in the future on and off the field.”

Photo gallery: Freshman of the Year Award presented to Trevor Lawrence at Clemson spring game

Former Alabama and NFL running back Shaun Alexander formally presented the inaugural Shaun Alexander/FWAA Freshman of the Year Trophy to Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence during Clemson’s spring game on April 6.

Call for entries in the 2019 Best Writing Contest

FWAA members may begin submitting entries in the FWAA’s 27th annual Best Writing Contest now.

CATEGORIES

  • Game Story (Immediate Deadline)
  • Feature Story/Profile
  • Enterprise/Investigative
  • Column/Analysis/Commentary

BEAT WRITER OF THE YEAR AWARD

In addition, see below, we have created a special award for the top beat writer as judged by a special FWAA committee headed by Executive Director Steve Richardson.

WRITING CONTEST RULES

You must be an FWAA member in good standing to enter.

Deadline: June 1, 2019. Entries sent after the deadline WILL NOT BE ACCEPTED.

Limit: One (1) article per category, although a series of articles may be submitted in the enterprise category.

Entries must have appeared in print or on line between Feb. 1, 2018 and Jan. 31, 2019.

Entries must be submitted electronically to contest@fwaa.com.

Entries not sent to this e-mail address will not be accepted

Send MS Word or text files only. DO NOT SEND HTML files, Word Perfect files, stories in other word processing software or links to stories on the Internet or electronic libraries

Make your entry easy to read by taking out unnecessary carriage returns (They can give your entry an odd look when opened by a judge’s word processing program)

Delete any embedded advertising, photos and cutlines from the files (The file should contain only your story and your identifying information)

At the top of each entry, the following information should be included:

  • Writer(s)
  • Publication or online service
  • Category
  • Date of publication
  • E-mail address and telephone number for the writer(s) of the entry

The entries will be sorted and stripped of identifying information and forwarded to the judge(s).

Files containing your entries should follow this naming convention: yourname-category.doc

The category must be one of these four words: Game, Feature, Enterprise or Column

Example: KenStephens-game.doc

FWAA BEAT WRITER OF THE YEAR AWARD: If you have a nomination of a beat writer who covers major college football (either a team or a conference) or you want to nominate yourself, please send an e-mail/letter explaining the qualifications of the person (no more than 250 words) to:

Steve Richardson
FWAA Executive Director
18652 Vista del Sol
Dallas, TX 75287

Steve’s e-mail is tiger@fwaa.com. Steve and his committee will then make inquiries into the FWAA members nominated. In order to qualify for this award the person nominated must have been an FWAA member during the 2018 football season.

Questions? E-mail Ken Stephens at ken.stephens@sbcglobal.net.

UCLA’S Jerry Robinson named 2019 Bronko Nagurski Legends Award recipient

College Hall-of-Famer joins growing list of honored college football legends

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — The Charlotte Touchdown Club in conjunction with the Football Writers Association of America proudly announces UCLA great Jerry Robinson as the recipient of the 2019 Bronko Nagurski Legends Award presented by Rolle Oral & Facial Surgery, which recognizes outstanding defensive football players from the past 40 years.  The award will be presented formally during the annual Bronko Nagurski Trophy Awards Banquet on December 9, 2019.

Jerry Robinson

“Wow!  Just when you think that people have forgotten about those great players from back in the day, I received a phone call from Steve Richardson of the Football Writers Association of America congratulating me on being named the 2019 Bronko Nagurski Legends Award recipient. I was stunned and truly honored to receive this award because I know that Bronko Nagurski was one of the greatest football players ever and the annual award presented in his name goes to the best defensive player in college football,” said Jerry Robinson.

“Because of his many achievements on and off the gridiron, Jerry Robinson is an ideal choice for this year’s Bronko Nagurski Legends Award,” commented Dr. Richard R. Rolle, Jr. of Rolle Oral & Facial Surgery. “Having played college football at the University of Notre Dame under legendary coach Lou Holtz, I understand on a very personal level, the focus, commitment, and hard work it takes to be remembered as one of the game’s all-time greats. Congratulations from the entire staff of Rolle Oral & Facial Surgery to Jerry Robinson on this well-deserved honor.”

Robinson joins a growing list of prestigious Bronko Nagurski Legends Award recipients including: Alan Page, Bubba Smith, Ted Hendricks, Roger Wehrli, Mike McCoy, Jack Youngblood, Larry Jacobson, Randy Rhino, Randy White, Randy Gradishar, Chet Moeller, Ross Browner, and Tom Cousineau.

Jerry Robinson was a star athlete at Cardinal Newman High School in Santa Rosa, California. He captained the football, basketball and track teams. He ran the 100-yard dash in 9.5 seconds and high jumped 6 feet 5 inches. UCLA used him as a wide receiver his freshman year and moved him to inside linebacker just before the Rose Bowl game with Ohio State. As a linebacker Robinson made All-American three times. He was a Consensus choice in 1976, Unanimous in 1977 and 1978. Robinson set a school record for most tackles (28) in a single game against Air Force in 1976. His career total 468 tackles, set a UCLA record. The Downtown Athletic Club of New York named him Linebacker of the Year (Now named the Dick Butkus Award) in 1977 and 1978.) He received the Pop Warner Award as Best West Coast player in 1978. Robinson stood 6-3, weighed 208, and wore jersey No. 84, which UCLA retired. His name and number is displayed in the Ring of Honor at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena. Robinson was named to the UCLA Athletics Hall of Fame, as well as the College Football Hall of Fame. Jerry was also one of only 50 players to be named to The All Century Pac 12 Team.

Robinson was selected in the first round of the 1979 NFL draft by the Philadelphia Eagles. He played a total of 13 years in the NFL, six with the Philadelphia Eagles and seven with the Los Angeles Raiders. Robinson’s NFL awards and achievements include: NFC Defensive Rookie of the Year. Participant in Super Bow XV (Philadelphia Eagles vs Oakland Raiders). 1987 Ed Block Courage Award. Four time All-Pro Selection and participant in one Pro-Bowl.

Currently Jerry Robinson is Vice President, Board of Directors for a nonprofit organization called Shoes4kidz and produces a podcast “People Doing Good” which highlights people doing good things in their neighborhoods.

About The Independence Fund
The Independence Fund is a nonprofit organization that empowers our nation’s severely wounded veterans and the caregivers who support them to take control of their lives.  Through its dedicated mobility and treatment programs, the Fund assists veterans in transforming their lives toward a better future  The Independence Fund believes we owe it to our veterans to provide the resources they need to move forward and build a strong foundation toward lasting emotional and physical healing in order to reestablish their independence.  To learn more, visit www.independencefund.org.

About Rolle Oral & Facial Surgery
Dr Richard R. Rolle Jr. is a leading oral & maxillofacial surgeon, with strong ties to athletics and delivering excellence www.rolleoralfacialsurgery.com.  Rolle Oral & Facial Surgery offers expertise in: dental implants, wisdom tooth extraction, youth-capturing, cosmetic injectables, oral surgery and cleft lip reconstruction in his Lake Norman, North Carolina practice.  Dr. Rolle holds a B.A. from the University of Notre Dame where he played varsity football under legendary Coach Lou Holtz.  He completed his oral surgery internship at Harvard’s Massachusetts General Hospital and holds a Doctor of Dental Surgery from Meharry Medical College.  Rolle Oral & Facial Surgery is the official surgeon for the Charlotte Hornets, Charlotte Checkers and Charlotte 49ers.

The Charlotte Touchdown Club is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization founded in 1990 for the purpose of promoting high school, collegiate, and professional football in the Charlotte, North Carolina region.  Since its inception, the club has grown as well as diversified boasting a sponsor team of more than (80) companies.  The Club’s activities and services focus community attention on the outstanding Citizenship, Scholarship, Sportsmanship, and Leadership of area athletes and coaches.  Through individual and corporate support, more than $2,000,000 has been raised to benefit the Touchdown Club’s scholarship efforts.

Founded in 1941, the Football Writers Association of America consists of the men and women across North America who cover college football for a living.  The membership includes journalists, broadcasters and publicists, as well as key executives in all the areas that involve the game. The FWAA works to govern areas that include game day operations, major awards and an All-America team.  Through its website, the FWAA works to improve communication among all those who work within the game. The FWAA also sponsors scholarships for aspiring writers and an annual writing contest.  Behind the leadership of President David Jones and Executive Director Steve Richardson and a board of veteran journalists, the FWAA continues grow and work to help college football prosper at all levels. There are now over 1,000 members.

The Bronko Nagurski Trophy is a member of the National College Football Awards Association (NCFAA), which was founded in 1997 as a coalition of the major collegiate football awards to protect, preserve and enhance the integrity, influence and prestige of the game’s predominant awards.  The NCFAA encourages professionalism and the highest standards for the administration of its member awards and the selection of their candidates and recipients.  For more information, visit the association’s official website, www.NCFAA.org.

The Bronko Nagurski Trophy is presented annually by the Charlotte Touchdown Club and the Football Writers Association of America to the nation’s most outstanding NCAA defensive football player at the Bronko Nagurski Awards Banquet in Charlotte, N.C.  All proceeds benefit the Charlotte Touchdown Club Scholarship Fund.  For more information call 704-347-2918 or www.touchdownclub.com.

 

Ryan Day named keynote speaker for 2019 Bronko Nagurski Awards Banquet

Charlotte, N.C. — The Charlotte Touchdown Club in conjunction with the Football Writers Association of America, officially announced today that Ohio State coach Ryan Day will be the keynote speaker for the 2019 Bronko Nagurski Awards Banquet scheduled for Monday, December 9.

“I am grateful and appreciative the Charlotte Touchdown Club has selected me for the honor of speaking at the 25th Anniversary Bronko Nagurski Awards Banquet Monday, December 9th in Charlotte, North Carolina,” Day said. “It will be really special to assist an organization that does so much good in the community for student-athletes, and also honors the top defensive player in America through its partnership with the Football Writers Association of America.”

Ohio State coach Ryan Day

“We’re excited to welcome Coach Ryan Day as the keynote speaker for this year’s Bronko Nagurski Banquet,” said John Rocco, executive director of the Charlotte Touchdown Club. “From playing quarterback at the University of New Hampshire under Chip Kelly to the head football coach at The Ohio State University, Coach Day’s career has been nothing short of remarkable and we all look forward to hearing more about his journey.”

Sometime around 6:30 p.m. Pacific Standard Time on January 1, 2019, Ryan Day had a whistle placed around his neck by retiring head coach Urban Meyer in front of the team after its 28-23 Rose Bowl Game victory over Washington. The head coaching tenure of Day at The Ohio State University had officially begun.

Technically, Day’s first day on the job was Jan. 2, but that moment in the locker room at the Rose Bowl in front of 124 players, including more than 100 who will be a part of his first team, will have the lasting impact of origination for the 39-year-old from Manchester, N.H., who becomes just the 25th coach for a storied program that ranks second all-time in victories and will play its 130th season of football in 2019.

“It’s an amazing feeling,” Day said later on in the locker room. “To be the leader of such a special place, a special group of men, this program, Buckeye Nation … it is an honor!”

Day officially starts his head coaching career with a record of 3-0. He is credited with the wins earned over Oregon State, Rutgers and 15th-ranked TCU at the beginning of the 2018 season when he served about eight weeks in August and September as Ohio State’s acting head coach. He has a five-year contract through the 2023 season that will pay him $4.5 million annually.

A quarterbacks coach for the San Francisco 49ers in 2016 under Chip Kelly and in 2015 for the Philadelphia Eagles under Kelly, Day is in his third season overall at Ohio State and his 18th season as a coach in the NFL or collegiate ranks. He was Ohio State’s offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach the past two seasons.

The impact he has had on the program in such a short time has been considerable.  No school has had more passing touchdowns the past two seasons than the 90 that Ohio State’s quarterbacks have thrown in that time. Ohio State also ranks seventh nationally over the past two seasons in passing yards per game and third in completion percentage.

Ohio State, in Day’s two seasons, has won six championships: back-to-back Big Ten championships; two Big Ten East Division titles; the 2018 Cotton Bowl and this year’s Rose Bowl.

In 2018 Ohio State ranked second nationally in total offense and passing yards, and No. 8 in scoring. It established Big Ten Conference records for offensive yards per game (535.6), passing yards (5,100), passing yards per game (373.0), touchdown passes (51), completions (396) and total plays (1,131).

Individually, quarterback Dwayne Haskins was a Heisman Trophy finalist who became just the sixth player to throw 50 touchdown passes in a season. He was named the Chicago Tribune Silver Football award winner as the Big Ten’s best player and he was also named the Big Ten’s offensive player of the year and its quarterback of the year.

Wide receiver Parris Campbell this year became just the fifth Ohio State receiver to top 1,000 receiving yards in a season, and running back J.K. Dobbins became the first Buckeye to top 1,000 yards rushing as a freshman and sophomore.

Additionally, in 10 of 14 games this year, Ohio State had 500 yards or more of total offense, including 567 against the nation’s top-ranked defense in a 62-39 win against No. 4 Michigan.

Day was Ohio State’s 2018 nominee for the Broyles Award, which goes annually to the top assistant coach in the country.

The 2017 season was Day’s first in Columbus and it also proved to be a success. His starting quarterback, J.T. Barrett, was a finalist for the Davey O’Brien National Quarterback of the Year Award and he was named the Big Ten’s quarterback of the year after a season in which he set seven school single season records and broke the Big Ten Conference career mark for touchdowns responsible for with 147.

Additionally, Ohio State’s offense was fifth nationally in passing efficiency in 2017, sixth in scoring and eighth in total offense, plus it led the Big Ten in rushing, passing efficiency, scoring and total offense.

On the same day that legendary coach Urban Meyer announced his retirement — Dec. 4, 2018 — Day was named to succeed him.

“I am truly honored to be here today and am so appreciative to President Drake and Gene Smith for the faith they have in me to lead this team,” Day said at a packed press conference at the Fawcett Center on Ohio State’s campus. “I love this program and its student-athletes and I want Buckeye Nation to know how hard we are going to work to ensure this program remains the very best in the country.

“I also want to say ‘thank you’ to coach Meyer. His coaching wisdom and his elite ability to motivate and prepare a team is something everyone on this staff not only appreciates, but learns from and carries forward. I am grateful for the two seasons I’ve had as a part of his staff.”

As an NFL quarterbacks coach, Day worked with Colin Kaepernick and Blaine Gabbert in 2016 with the 49ers and he helped Sam Bradford to a record-setting 2015 season with the Eagles as he completed 65 percent of his passes – an Eagles single-season record – and threw for 3,725 yards. Both figures were career highs at the time for Bradford.

In addition to his two NFL seasons as a quarterbacks coach, Day has 15 years of collegiate coaching experience, including offensive coordinator positions at Temple and Boston College, as well as positions with Florida — as a graduate assistant under Meyer – and at his alma mater, New Hampshire.

He coached receivers for a year under Al Golden at Temple University (2006) and for five seasons at Boston College (2007-11). Day worked three years as Steve Addazio’s offensive coordinator: in 2012 he ran the offense and coached receivers at Temple and in 2013 and 2014 he was quarterbacks coach and offensive coordinator at Boston College.

In 2014, Day’s Boston College offense ranked second in the ACC and 21st nationally with 254.4 rushing yards per game, and in 2013 Eagle running back Andre Williams rushed for more than 2,000 yards on his way to unanimous All-America honors while being named a finalist for the Heisman Trophy.

Day’s Boston College assistant coach experiences — he has coached there on three separate occasions — include the 2007 season when quarterback Matt Ryan threw for over 4,500 prior to becoming the third overall pick in the 2008 draft.

Day is a native of Manchester, NH. He was a three-year starting quarterback at New Hampshire when Chip Kelly was offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach. He was a team captain as a senior and earned his degree in business administration in 2002. He has a master’s in administrative studies from Boston College (2004).

Day, and his wife, Christina, who uses the nickname “Nina,” have three children: Ryan Jr. or “RJ”, Grace and Ourania.

About The Independence Fund

The Independence Fund is a nonprofit organization that empowers our nation’s severely wounded veterans and the caregivers who support them to take control of their lives.  Through its dedicated mobility and treatment programs, the Fund assists veterans in transforming their lives toward a
better future.  The Independence Fund believes we owe it to our veterans to provide the resources they need to move forward and build a strong foundation toward lasting emotional and physical healing in order to reestablish their independence.  To learn more, visit  www.independencefund.org.

About Rolle Oral & Facial Surgery

Dr. Richard R. Rolle Jr. is a leading oral & maxillofacial surgeon, with strong ties to athletics and expertise in dental implants, wisdom tooth extraction, youth-capturing, cosmetic injectables, oral surgery and
cleft lip reconstruction in his Lake Norman, North Carolina practice.  Dr. Rolle holds a B.A. from the University of Notre Dame where he played varsity football under legendary Coach Lou Holtz.  He completed his oral surgery internship at Harvard’s Massachusetts General Hospital and holds a Doctor of Dental Surgery from Meharry Medical College.  Rolle Oral & Facial Surgery is the official surgeon for the Charlotte Hornets, Charlotte Checkers and Charlotte 49ers.

About the Charlotte Touchdown Club

The Charlotte Touchdown Club is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization founded in 1990 for the purpose of promoting high school, collegiate, and professional football in the Charlotte, North Carolina region.  Since its inception, the club has grown as well as diversified boasting a sponsor team of more than (80) companies.  The Club’s activities and services focus community attention on the outstanding Citizenship, Scholarship, Sportsmanship, and Leadership of area athletes and coaches.  Through individual and corporate support, more than $2,000,000 has been raised to benefit the Touchdown
Club’s scholarship efforts.

About the FWAA

Founded in 1941, the Football Writers Association of America consists of the men and women across North America who cover college football for a living.  The membership includes journalists, broadcasters and publicists, as well as key executives in all the areas that involve the game. The FWAA works to govern areas that include game day operations, major awards and an All-America team.  Through its website, the FWAA works to improve communication among all those who work
within the game. The FWAA also sponsors scholarships for aspiring writers and an annual writing contest.  There are now over 1,000 members.

The Bronko Nagurski Trophy is a member of the National College Football Awards Association (NCFAA), which was founded in 1997 as a coalition of the major collegiate football awards to protect, preserve and enhance the integrity, influence and prestige of the game’s predominant awards.  The NCFAA encourages professionalism and the highest standards for the administration of its member awards and the selection of their candidates and recipients.  For more information, visit the association’s official website, www.NCFAA.org.

The Bronko Nagurski Trophy is presented annually by the Charlotte Touchdown Club and the Football Writers Association of America to the nation’s most outstanding NCAA defensive football player at the Bronko Nagurski Awards Banquet in Charlotte, N.C.  All proceeds benefit the Charlotte Touchdown Club Scholarship Fund.  For more information call 704-347-2918 or www.touchdownclub.com.

Call for entries in the 2019 Best Writing Contest

FWAA members may begin submitting entries in the FWAA’s 27th annual Best Writing Contest now.

CATEGORIES

  • Game Story (Immediate Deadline)
  • Feature Story/Profile
  • Enterprise/Investigative
  • Column/Analysis/Commentary

BEAT WRITER OF THE YEAR AWARD

In addition, see below, we have created a special award for the top beat writer as judged by a special FWAA committee headed by Executive Director Steve Richardson.

WRITING CONTEST RULES

You must be an FWAA member in good standing to enter.

Deadline: June 1, 2019. Entries sent after the deadline WILL NOT BE ACCEPTED.

Limit: One (1) article per category, although a series of articles may be submitted in the enterprise category.

Entries must have appeared in print or on line between Feb. 1, 2018 and Jan. 31, 2019.

Entries must be submitted electronically to contest@fwaa.com.

Entries not sent to this e-mail address will not be accepted

Send MS Word or text files only. DO NOT SEND HTML files, Word Perfect files, stories in other word processing software or links to stories on the Internet or electronic libraries

Make your entry easy to read by taking out unnecessary carriage returns (They can give your entry an odd look when opened by a judge’s word processing program)

Delete any embedded advertising, photos and cutlines from the files (The file should contain only your story and your identifying information)

At the top of each entry, the following information should be included:

  • Writer(s)
  • Publication or online service
  • Category
  • Date of publication
  • E-mail address and telephone number for the writer(s) of the entry

The entries will be sorted and stripped of identifying information and forwarded to the judge(s).

Files containing your entries should follow this naming convention: yourname-category.doc

The category must be one of these four words: Game, Feature, Enterprise or Column

Example: KenStephens-game.doc

FWAA BEAT WRITER OF THE YEAR AWARD: If you have a nomination of a beat writer who covers major college football (either a team or a conference) or you want to nominate yourself, please send an e-mail/letter explaining the qualifications of the person (no more than 250 words) to:

Steve Richardson
FWAA Executive Director
18652 Vista del Sol
Dallas, TX 75287

Steve’s e-mail is tiger@fwaa.com. Steve and his committee will then make inquiries into the FWAA members nominated. In order to qualify for this award the person nominated must have been an FWAA member during the 2018 football season.

Questions? E-mail Ken Stephens at ken.stephens@sbcglobal.net.