Football Gazette's Small College Football Blog

Don Hansen's Football Gazette Blog of information, comments, notes, and tidebits on Small College Football. NCAA 1-AA & Mid Major, Division II & Mid Major, Division III, NAIA, and NCCAA

Monday, July 10, 2006

Former President Gerald Ford Receives Enberg Award for Distinguished Service

The National Football Foundation & College Hall of Fame, Inc.

Monday's Chalktalk

News and notes from around college football for July 10, 2006

Former President Gerald Ford Receives Enberg Award for Distinguished Service

The College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA) last weekend named former U.S. President Gerald Ford as the 2006 recipient of its Dick Enberg Award. The award, presented by the group since 1997 and named after the longtime television sportscaster, annually recognizes one individual committed to promoting the values of education and academics while furthering the meaning of the student-athlete. As a football star at the University of Michigan in the 1930s, Ford earned three varsity letters from 1932-1934 and participated on back-to-back undefeated and Big Ten title teams in '32 and '33. In 1934, Ford was named team MVP as starting center, and played in both the East-West Shrine Game and an All-Star game against the NFL champions Chicago Bears following the season. Ford also served as an assistant coach at Yale University before embarking on a three-decade stint in national politics, culminating with his term as President of the United States from 1974-1977. Ford received the NCAA's Theodore Roosevelt Award in 1975 and the National Football Foundation's Gold Medal in 1972.

Northwestern Names Former LB Pat Fitzgerald as Head Coach

Former two-time Nagurski Award winner Pat Fitzgerald, who helped lead Northwestern to the 1996 Rose Bowl as a standout junior linebacker, was the named the Wildcats 29th head football coach on Friday. Fitzgerald replaces Randy Walker, the seven-year NU head coach who died suddenly of a heart attack on June 29. At 31 years old, Fitzgerald becomes the youngest head coach in Division I-A and takes over a team that finished 7-5 in 2005 and secured a spot in the Vitalis Sun Bowl against UCLA, a game they lost 50-38. He joined the Wildcats staff under Walker in 2001 as the defensive secondary coach, became the linebackers coach in 2002 and later added the title of recruiting coordinator. Fitzgerald previously spent time as an assistant at Colorado, Idaho and Maryland. In addition to the Nagurski Award, Fitzgerald twice captured the Bednarik Award as the nation's top defensive player and was named Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year in both 1995 and 1996. He helped Northwestern capture at least a share of the conference title in both seasons, while the school's 1996 Rose Bowl appearance was their first berth in the annual classic in 47 years. Fitzgerald joins a trend of 30-something coaches receiving head coaching jobs on the I-A level this offseason, a list that includes Wisconsin's Bret Bielema (36), Kansas State's Ron Prince (36) and Temple's Al Golden (37).

Two-Minute Drill

The 2006 Blue Ribbon College Football Yearbook, the publications' sixth edition covering all things college football, began shipping last week. Orders can be placed at ... Wake Forest tight end Zac Selmon returned to the U.S. after two weeks in Liberia spent building a school for children who survived the country's civil war... Georgia Southern wide receiver Teddy Craft died last week from injuries sustained in a motorcycle accident... Former Utah State football letterman and assistant coach Ralph Maughan died last week at age 83... Northwestern will endow a scholarship in memory of the recently deceased Randy Walker, who coached the Wildcats from 1999-2005...

ESPNU will feature six of the nation's top incoming freshman in a new reality series called "ESPNU Summer House" set for debut on July 25. The show, hosted by former Ohio State linebacker and current college football analyst Chris Spielman, will film freshmen Terrence Austin (UCLA), London Crawford (Arkansas), Jarred Fayson (Florida), Cody Hawkins (Colorado), Cart Kelly (Princeton) and Taylor Potts (Texas Tech) as they live together for a week and compete in various challenges... Sports Illustrated On Campus profiled their 15 Greatest College Athletes of All-Time last week, which included only players who excelled in more than one sport while in college. Among the greats that made the top 15 were Jim Brown (#1 overall) and nine other former college gridders as well as current Notre Dame wide receiver Jeff Samardzija (#14)...

More than a dozen former Georgia football players will host the "Countdown to Kickoff" this Saturday, an event organized by former linemen Matt Stinchcomb (1998 Draddy Trophy recipient) and Jon Stinchcomb (2002 Draddy Trophy finalist) to provide fans an opportunity to interact with players while enjoying carnival rides and games... The Illinois football team held a supply drive at Cunningham Children's home last month that collected more than $9,000 in goods and supplies for the children housed there... Former Miami (Fla.) linebacker Jonathan Vilma joined USC great Ronnie Lott on the National Football Foundation's Play It Smart National Advisory Board, as announced last week...

The 12th Man Foundation at Texas A&M received $1 million contributions from both Jerry and Cindy Holditch and Glenn and Lauren Hart to help finance a multi-purpose indoor athletic complex... The Wall of Fame at the recently constructed press box by the University of Iowa will feature legendary journalist Bert McGrane and 2002 Chris Schenkel Award recipient Bob Brooks among 18 other members of the media... University of Wisconsin season ticket renewal packages reached an all-time high for the Badgers upcoming 2006 season...

The 51 members of the U.S. Naval Academy's 2006 football recruiting class include 19 from the state of Texas... Army's 2006 football recruiting class features 32 incoming freshmen from 23 different states, as announced by the school last week... The UNLV football team produced the second highest cumulative team GPA in team history this year with a 2.649... Louisville launched two websites last week to help promote the Heisman campaigns of junior quarterback Brian Brohm and senior running back Michael Bush... The Blue-Gold flag game wrapped up camp last week for 50 players and 10 coaches participating in the fourth annual Notre Dame Monogram Club's Football Fantasy Camp... The October 12 game between Clemson and Temple, originally scheduled to be played in Philadelphia, will now take place at Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte... Florida mascot Albert the Alligator performed during the 14th annual Celebrity Mascot Games last week in Orlando to benefit New Hope for Kids...

Administrators from East Tennessee State University are contemplating bringing back its football program... Louisiana-Monroe replaced their Indian mascot with a new Warhawk logo that the school unveiled last month... All eleven Florida A&M football games will be carried live on the internet this year thanks to a new agreement with Jericho Broadcasting Company... Illinois will honor members of the U.S. armed forces with Military Day during their season opener against Eastern Illinois on September 2... Fresno State will host popular music artists and well-know music groups along Bulldog Boulevard this year prior to each home football game this year...

Recently retired Kansas State head coach Bill Snyder completed his autobiography, "Bill Snyder: They Said It Couldn't Be Done", which is set for release this Wednesday... Former Tennessee head coach and 1987 College Football Hall of Fame inductee Johnny Majors served as the honorary chairman for a recent golf tournament to benefit the Center for Living and Learning in Franklin, Tenn... 2000 College Football Hall of Fame inductee Johnny Rodgers is leading a push in the Nebraska Supreme Court to get former NU coach Tom Osborne's name listed as a write-in candidate on the November gubernatorial ballot...

Construction in and around Nebraska's Memorial Stadium, which includes new sod for the full-length football practice fields at the Ed and Joyanne Gass Practice Facility as well as the installation of LED modules for the north HuskerVision screen, is nearing completion... Improvements taking place at Baylor's Floyd Casey Stadium this offseason include the construction of a new Recruiting Center near the stadium's north endzone... Texas Tech is auctioning off parts of the AstroTurf they are replacing at Jones AT&T Stadium... Kyle Field, on the campus of Texas A&M University, will sport a new 53-by-73 foot video board this season... Iowa buried a time capsule outside Kinnick Stadium last week slated to be opened in 75 years...

Baylor running back Phil Tran, OL Seth Zehr of Iowa State, Texas DB Karim Meijer and defensive back Matthew LaFon of Texas A&M were among 24 recipients of 2005-06 Dr. Prentice Gautt Postgraduate Scholarships as announced by the Big 12 last week... Missouri quarterback and 2005 Draddy Trophy Finalist Brad Smith and Texas Tech quarterback Cody Hodges were recognized with Community of Champions awards by the Big 12 Conference in conjunction with Chick-fil-A for the 2005-06 academic year...

The Nebraska Football Hall of Fame added former Cornhuskers Chris Dishman, Bob Lingenfelter, Mike Minter, Christian Peter, Jared Tomich, Kerry Weinmaster and Tyrone Williams as 2006 inductees last week... Former Syracuse standout Tim Green, a 2002 inductee into the College Football Hall of Fame and an NFF National Scholar-Athlete, and former Notre Dame guard Robert Burger earned induction into the CoSIDA Academic All-America Hall of Fame last weekend... Former offensive lineman Kent Hill and football manager Gus Georgeton were among eight former Yellow Jackets announced as the 2006 Class of inductees into the Georgia Tech Sports Hall of Fame last week... Buckeye legends Eddie George and Ted Provost are among 12 members who will earn induction into the Ohio State Athletics Hall of Fame on September 15...

Texas athletics director DeLoss Dodds, the 2006 winner of the National Football Foundation's John L. Toner Award, is scheduled to receive a raise and a contract extension following a year in which every Texas team finished either first or second in Big 12 regular-season or tournament competition... New Colorado chancellor George "Bud" Peterson played wide receiver at Kansas State from 1972-1974... Jim Bartko was named the new senior associate athletics director for development at the University of California... Tom Deahn left his position as director of football operations at Maryland to assume the same role at Temple... Southern Illinois named Mario Moccia their new director of athletics... North Texas hired T.J. Leon as an athletics development associate... The Big Ten Conference hired Andrea Williams as their new associate commissioner for branding... Indiana named Frank Cuervo as their new assistant athletics director for external operations... Arizona State named Dawn Rogers their new senior associate athletic director.

Schedule Spotlight: Western Athletic Conference

Team - Date - First Opponent (Home/Away)

Boise State - August 31 - Sacramento State (H)

Fresno State - September 1 - Nevada (H)

Hawaii - September 2 - Alabama (A)

Idaho - September 2 - Michigan State (A)

Louisiana Tech - September 2 - Nebraska (A)

Nevada - September 1 - Fresno State (A)

New Mexico State - August 31 - SE Louisiana (H)

San Jose State - September 2 - Washington (A)

Utah State - September 2 - Wyoming (A)

With 120 chapters and 12,000 members nationwide, The National Football Foundation & College Hall of Fame, a non-profit educational organization, runs programs designed to use the power of amateur football in developing scholarship, citizenship and athletic achievement in young people. The NFF presents the MacArthur Trophy, the Draddy Trophy presented by HealthSouth and releases the Bowl Championship Series (BCS) Standings. NFF programs include the College Football Hall of Fame in South Bend, Ind., Play It Smart, the NFF Center for Youth Development Through Sport at Springfield College (Mass.), the NFL-NFF Coaching Academy, and scholarships of over $1 million for college and high school scholar-athletes.

For more information, please visit


Post a Comment

<< Home