Wednesday, December 10, 2008

NFF: Chalk Talk

News and Notes From Around College Football

Historical Moments in NFF Annual Awards Dinner History

50 Years Ago -
Oct. 28, 1958 - 10 standouts receive their College Hall of Fame plaques at the inaugural Awards Dinner at the then-Astor Hotel (later Waldorf=Astoria). U.S. President Dwight D. Eisenhower (a standout at Army) is awarded the inaugural NFF Gold Medal, and "Four Horsemen" member Harry Stuhldreher of Notre Dame joins the likes of Michigan's Harry Kipke among the Hall of Famers honored at the only Awards Dinner not held in December.

25 Years Ago - 1983 -
U.S. Presidents Gerald Ford and Richard Nixon join celebrity Bob Hope, the New York Metropolitan Opera's Robert Merrill, and dozens of other dignitaries to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the Awards Dinner. Nine previous 24 NFF Gold Medal recipients, including Presidents Ford and Nixon, salute '83 Gold Medal honoree U.S. Rep. and football standout Jack Kemp.

10 Years Ago - 1998 - Noted businessman and longtime NFF supporter John McConnell receives the 41st NFF Gold Medal while the Awards Dinner celebrates many other achievers from the football world. Southeastern Conference commissioner and Bowl Championship Series mastermind Roy Kramer receives Distinguished American laurels.

Five Years Ago - 2003 - The 46th Awards Dinner lauds 135 seasons of college football history since the Princeton-Rutgers contest in 1869 and salutes 12 inductees into the College Hall of Fame. Heisman Trophy executive Rudy Riska captures the Outstanding Contribution to Amateur Football Award while quarterback Craig Krenzel of Ohio State is presented the 14th annual Draddy Trophy for academic excellence and football leadership.

Liberty Mutual Insurance and NFF Chairman Archie Manning to Announce 2008 Liberty Mutual Coach of the Year Award Finalists

Tomorrow, Liberty Mutual Insurance and NFF Chairman Archie Manning will announce the 25 finalists for the 2008 Liberty Mutual Coach of the Year Award, at the National Football Foundation's Annual Awards press conference.

The finalists - 10 from the Football Bowl Subdivision and five each from the Football Championship Subdivision, Division II and Division III - have been determined by a combination of hundreds of thousands of fan votes at and an objective scoring model endorsed by the College Football Hall of Fame. The scoring model considers such criteria as wins, team penalties, academic achievement by student-athletes, and civic and philanthropic commitments.

Finalists will be in the running for an award that includes $50,000 towards civic and charitable activities, $20,000 in scholarship donations for their schools' alumni associations, and permanent recognition in the College Football Hall of Fame.

BCS Notes

Oklahoma grabbed the No. 1 spot for the first time in the final BCS Standings for 2008. Florida finished the season at No. 2, while Texas, Alabama and Southern California rounded out the top five.

Appearances at No. 1 (through Dec. 7, 2008): Oklahoma 18; Ohio State 15, Southern California 15; Florida State 7; Miami (Fla.) 7; Alabama 5, Nebraska 5; Tennessee 5, Texas 3, LSU 2, Missouri 1; UCLA 1 - total of 12 schools, 84 standings.

FBS Conference Champions: ACC - Virginia Tech; Big East - Cincinnati; Big Ten -- (co) Penn State, Ohio State; Big 12 - Oklahoma; Conference USA - East Carolina; Mid-American - Buffalo; Mountain West - Utah; Pacific-10 - Southern California; SEC - Florida; Sun Belt - Troy; WAC - Boise State.

2008-09 BCS Bowl Match- Ups

Rose Bowl Presented by Citi - Penn State vs. Southern California, Jan. 1, 4:30 p.m. ABC

FedEx Orange - Cincinnati vs. Virginia Tech, Jan. 1, 8:30 p.m. FOX

Allstate Sugar - Alabama vs. Utah, Jan. 2, 8 p.m. FOX

Tostitos Fiesta - Ohio State vs. Texas, Jan. 5, 8 p.m. FOX

FedEx BCS National Championship - Florida vs. Oklahoma, Jan. 8, 8 p.m. FOX

Rose Bowl Announces 2008 Hall of Fame Class

Former USC standout wide receiver Keyshawn Johnson, first permanent Rose Bowl game manager Virgil Lubberden and former Michigan quarterback Chuck Ortmann will be inducted into the Rose Bowl Hall of Fame on Dec. 31 during ceremonies at the Rose Bowl Game Kickoff Luncheon presented by Trader Joe's.

The Rose Bowl Hall of Fame was established in 1989 and has honored 92 inductees over the last 20 years. A permanent plaque in the inductees' honor will be placed at The Court of Champions at the Rose Bowl Stadium.

Two-Minute Drill

Former Clemson interim head coach Dabo Swinney has been named permanent mentor for the Tigers...Steve Sarkisian was named head coach a< Washington... Utah State named Gary Andersen head football coach... Chip Kelly was named coach in waiting at Oregon... Mike Locksley was named head coach at New Mexico... Tim Beckman is the new head coach at Toledo... Nebraska and Wyoming have agreed to a three-game series starting in 2011... Texas Tech's Mike Leach received a three-year contract extension... Mike Gundy received a seven-year extension from Oklahoma State... Purdue hired Gary Nord as offensive coordinator... Mount Union (Ohio) has an NCAA-all- divisions-record 14 consecutive seasons with 500- plus points... 2006 Draddy Award winner, Rutgers All- America and current St. Louis Rams RB Brian Leonard joined author Thomas J. Frusciano at the Rutgers Bookstore last week for signings of "The Rutgers Football Vault," a collaborative book detailing the extensive history Scarlet Knights' football. With a forward by current Rutgers head coach Greg Schiano and an afterword by Leonard, the colorful 144-page book details 139 years of Rutgers football, which faced Princeton in the first intercollegiate contest in 1869.

Five finalists for the Walter Camp Player of the Year Award are Oklahoma QB Sam Bradford, Texas Tech QB Graham Harrell, Texas QB Colt McCoy, Florida QB Tim Tebow, and Texas Tech WR Michael Crabtree... The 10 finalists for the Allstate Sugar Bowl Manning Award, given to a top national FBS quarterback and named in honor of NFF chairman of the board Archie Manning and sons Peyton and Eli, are Sam Bradford (Oklahoma), Chase Daniel (Missouri), Nate Davis (Ball State), Graham Harrell (Texas Tech), Brian Johnson (Utah), Colt McCoy (Texas), Zac Robinson (Oklahoma State), Mark Sanchez (USC), Matthew Stafford (Georgia), and Tim Tebow (Florida)... Finalists for the 2008 Broyles Award for nation's top FBS assistant coach are Utah's Gary Andersen, TCU's Dick Bumpas, Ball State's Stan Parrish, Florida's Charlie Strong, and Oklahoma's Kevin Wilson... The Southeastern Conference AT&T Legends for last week's title game were NFF Hall of Famer Billy Ray Smith of Arkansas, Alabama's Bart Starr, Auburn's Al Del Greco, Florida's Errict Rhett, Georgia's Eric Zeier, Kentucky's Irv Goode, LSU's Lance Smith, Mississippi State's Tom Goode, South Carolina's Brad Edwards, Tennessee head coach Doug Dickey, and Vanderbilt's Shelton Quarles.

Washington & Lee All-Southern Conference QB Gil Bocetti, 78, died on Nov. 24 at Fayetteville, N.C.... Thornton Sterling, 95, Baylor's oldest living student-athlete, died in Waco, Texas, last week... Former Iowa State RB Stevie Hicks, 25, died in Omaha, Neb.

NFF News

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