FWAA taking nominations for Armed Forces Merit Award

armed forces merit awardWe are now taking nominations for the Armed Forces Merit Award. From those teams and conferences you cover please keep an eye out for the following:

WHO QUALIFIES?: An Individual with an armed forces background who is currently involved as an athletic administrator, football coach, staff member or player and has brought distinction and recognition to both his or her armed forces service and the sport. These include Individuals or groups that have created, developed or produced football-related programs that provide care, concern and support for past or present members of the United States armed forces or their families.

DEADLINE FOR SUBMISSION: Sept. 30, 2014

SELECTION PROCESS: A blue-ribbon committee will take the nominations and select a winner during the fall.

Send nominations to FWAA Member Tim Simmons at bfishinc@aol.com or call 720-244-6580.

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Randy White to receive Bronko Nagurski Legends Award

Randy White

Randy White

CHARLOTTE, N.C.  – The Charlotte Touchdown Club, in conjunction with the Football Writers Association of America and Florida East Coast Railway, proudly announces that Randy White will be the recipient of the 2014 Bronko Nagurski Legends Award, which recognizes outstanding defensive football players from the past 40 years.

The award will be presented formally to White during the annual Bronko Nagurski Trophy Awards Banquet on Monday, December  8 at The Westin Hotel.  University of Alabama head coach Nick Saban will be the keynote speaker.

White’s career highlights include:

  • Nine-time Pro Bowl selection (1977, 1978, 1979, 1980, 1981, 1982, 1983, 1984, 1985)
  • Nine-time First-Team All-Pro selection (1977, 1978 , 1979, 1980, 1981, 1982, 1983, 1984, 1985)
  • Three-time NFC Champion (1975, 1977, 1978)
  • Super Bowl champion (XII)
  • 1978 Co-Super Bowl MVP
  • Inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame (1994)
  • Played for the University of Maryland (1972-74)
  • 1974 Outland Trophy
  • 1974 Lombardi Award
  • 1974 UPI Lineman of the Year
  • Two-time All-American (1973, 1974)
  • NFL 1980s All-Decade Team
  • Inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame (1994)
  • Dallas Cowboys Ring of Honor

For Reservations or Information on how to become a member of the Club’s Sponsor Team, please call 704-347-2918 or email John Rocco atjrocco@touchdownclub.com.

Nick Saban to be keynote speaker at December Bronko Nagurski Awards Banquet in Charlotte

Nick Saban

Nick Saban

Charlotte, N.C. — The Charlotte Touchdown Club, in conjunction with the Football Writers Association of America, has announced that Alabama Coach Nick Saban will be the keynote speaker for the 2014 Bronko Nagurski Awards Banquet scheduled for Monday, December 8th.

“I appreciate the invitation to speak at the 2014 Bronko Nagurski Awards Banquet,” Saban said. “The Charlotte Touchdown Club and the Football Writers Association of America have built the Bronko Nagurski Trophy into one of the nation’s premiere defensive awards for college football and I’m excited to be a part of this year’s event.”

“The Charlotte Touchdown Club is thrilled to have Coach Nick Saban as Keynote Speaker for the 2014 Bronko Nagurski Banquet,” said John Rocco Executive Director of the Charlotte Touchdown Club. “We look forward to Coach Saban’s remarks and the announcement of the 2014 Bronko Nagurski Trophy winner at our black tie banquet held December 8th at the Westin Hotel.”

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President’s column: Introducing the FWAA-NFF Grantland Rice Super 16 Poll

2014 FWAA President Kirk Bohls

2014 FWAA President Kirk Bohls

Hope you didn’t miss it with all the hubbub over Bob Costas’s eye infection at the Winter Olympics and Johnny Manziel’s 40 time at the NFL Combine, but our Football Writers Association of America recently announced – a little drum roll, please – a new college football poll.

I’m sure all of you have been scratching your heads wondering why there hasn’t been another football poll lately. As for enduring questions of our time, it’s right up there with the whereabouts of Sasquatch and Lane Kiffin’s memoirs.

Well, wonder no more. This is big news, folks.

We do have our reasons why our 1,350 member-strong FWAA has collaborated with the prestigious National Football Foundation, our long-time partner since the 1940s, to launch the first “FWAA-NFF Grantland Rice Super 16” poll this coming fall.

Why not? That could be one simple reason, but we had far better rationale behind our plan.

I think we would all agree this is a momentous time in the history of college football as the very first playoff for the major division will be ushered in with a four-team tournament culminating with the championship game at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas, next Jan. 12.

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Comings and goings 2

Mark Anderson from the Las Vegas Review-Journal has been named the 2014 second vice president of the FWAA and moves into the line of presidential succession two years from now. Lee Barfknecht of the Omaha World-Herald, second vice president in 2013, automatically moved up to the first vice president’s role in 2014 behind FWAA President Kirk Bohls.

Comings and Goings

Long-time Denver Post writer John Henderson has retired from his daily job in Colorado and has moved to Italy where he has spent time in the past either on leave or on vacation. We hope at some time to get an update on his daily rituals there. … More…

No one understands Notre Dame better than former SID Roger Valdiserri

Roger Valdiserri, former Notre Dame sports information director

Roger Valdiserri, former Notre Dame sports information director

Roger Valdiserri is now a retired FWAA member, but for many years he serviced the media as the Sports Information Director at Notre Dame. This is a story about him  from the December 2013 publication of “Strong of Heart,” which features Notre Dame athletes, coaches and administrators who have or have had successful careers. Click here to read the story.

Member’s website provides database of Texas high school honors, playoff history

TheAthleticsDepartment.com

TheAthleticsDepartment.com

TheAthleticsDepartment.com is an online Texas high school athletics history book. TheAthleticsDepartment.com gathers Texas high school honor teams (All-State, All-District) and playoff pairings and stores them in a database. The result is a resource for media. TheAthleticsDepartment.com gives media an instant honors bio of Texas high school student-athletes. Our database now contains five years of all-district and all-state team members; 20 years of enrollment figures, alignments and round-by-round playoff results in all UIL team sports; and all state champions.

Current year honors and playoff information is on TheAthleticsDepartment.com. In the Premium Access you gain the full benefit of our complete database, searching our coaches directory, honors history and playoff history.

Grace Media, LLC is the publisher of The Athletics Department.com, a Texas web site dedicated to high school athletics history. The site is founded by former sports newspaper reporter/editor and FWAA member Sarah Hornaday.

Questions? Phone: 512.452.8800 or Email Info@GraceMediaWeb.com.

Omaha World-Herald’s FWAA members launching Internet radio show in March

Omaha World-Herald columnist  and former FWAA President  Tom Shatel  and his colleague Lee Barfknecht, the FWAA’s first vice-president, and several other FWAA members at the World-Herald are part of this new radio internet program that will launch in March. The following is Tom’s column about plans for the new show.

Beam me up, Mike’l.

We’re not far from a day when the AM radio will be replaced by Internet radio. A time when you can get in your car, plug in your phone and listen to your favorite talk show, order a pizza or buy movie tickets over the Internet.

Omaha World-Herald columnist and former FWAA President Tom Shatel

Omaha World-Herald columnist and former FWAA President Tom Shatel

So says Mike’l Severe, the new host of the World-Herald show “The Bottom Line.”

“It’s already starting,” Severe said. “I drove a Dodge truck recently and you’re able to drive to the movie theater, look up what’s playing, see the trailer, call the theater and buy tickets — all right there on that 7.1-inch screen.

“We’re not very far from ‘Star Trek.’ ”

The World-Herald is preparing to boldly go where few newspapers have gone before.

Beginning in March, The World-Herald will host a sports talk show that will be accessible on Omaha.com or through a “The Bottom Line” phone app.

“The Bottom Line” will run Monday through Friday from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m., and will feature World-Herald sportswriters, entertainment writers and news writers.

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2013 FWAA award photos

Photo Gallery: Eddie Robinson Coach of the Year Presentation


And if you’re interested in hearing the parody of Born in the USA (Born in the SEC) that Rick Neiheisel sang to Gus Malzahn, CLICK HERE to see the Los Angeles Times’ video.