National Football Foundation

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NFF CHALKTALK – Oct. 20, 2015, Presented by
Latest news & notes from the world of college football for the week of Oct. 20.
Published: 10/20/2015 3:55:00 PM

(Pictured: Two longtime members of the University of Colorado Athletics family, sports information director David Plati and former athletics director and NCAA champion skier Bill Marolt were among 12 honored last week by the University of Colorado Alumni Association at its 86th annual awards ceremony. At the event, from L-R, are the first American to win an Olympic medal in alpine skiing Billy Kidd, Marolt and NFF President & CEO and Colorado alumnus Steve Hatchell.)

Athletics Directors Molded on the Gridiron

The National Football Foundation & College Hall of Fame (NFF) continues with its campaign showcasing all of the nation’s athletics directors who have played football and how their experiences helped prepare them for leadership roles on our nation’s college campuses. The campaign captures the unique stories of each athletics director, and the stories are appearing throughout the season on Last week’s profiles included Oregon State athletics director Todd Stansbury, who played at Georgia Tech, and Clemson athletics director Dan Radakovich, a former Indiana (Pa.) tight end and punter. Check out all of the athletics director profiles on

This Week on

The NFF continues to promote, the organization’s newest addition to its campaign to highlight the good in the game and the lifelong benefits to those who play it. Recent headlines on the site include:

·         What Drives NFF National High School Scholar-Athlete Will Hefley III

·         Utah’s Smith Silences Doubters

·         Jim Bell Makes Most of Overseas Football Opportunity

Click here to sign up to receive the eNewsletter from The site focuses on the stories that evoke the qualities of leadership, sportsmanship, competitive zeal, character building and the drive for academic excellence that exemplifies many of the young men who play football and the families who support them.

FWAA-NFF Super 16 Poll – Week 7

Defending national champion Ohio State remained No. 1 in the FWAA-NFF Super 16 Poll as five teams received first place votes in Week 7 of the season. Baylor, TCU, Utah and LSU round out the top five in the poll, in which voters rank the top 16 teams in the Football Bowl Subdivision.

Click here to view the FWAA-NFF Super 16 Poll Rankings for Week 7.

Click here to view the individual rankings of every voter in the FWAA-NFF Super 16 Poll.

Click here for notes on Week 7 of the FWAA-NFF Super 16 Poll.

The results of the poll will be released every Sunday of the 2015 season and the individual votes of all members will also be made public. The final poll will be released Dec. 6. The pollsters consist of FWAA writers, College Football Hall of Famers, NFF Board Members and highly regarded collegiate administrators who were selected to create a balanced-geographical perspective as well as a diversity of viewpoints from the different roles associated with the game.


The Hall of Fame will host Haunted Hall of Fame, a family-friendly Halloween themed event, on Oct. 24, 25 and 31. Guests can sample sweet treats at every treat station throughout the Hall, build “haunted” bird houses with The Home Depot and win prizes in our scary scavenger hunt and costume contests. Click here for more information.

College Football Hall of Famer Chad Hennings (Air Force) visited the Hall on Oct. 17 with his new book “Forces of Character: Conversations about Building a Life of Impact.”

The Atlanta Falcons will host their Moms Football Safety Clinic on the Hall’s 45-yard indoor playing field Wednesday, Oct. 28, from 7-9 p.m. ET. The clinic will provide helpful information to moms who have children that currently play or are considering playing tackle football. The clinic will include classroom instructions on proper equipment fitting, concussion awareness and the Heads Up tackling technique. Moms should come dressed in active and athletic apparel. All participants must register at


The College Football Hall of Fame opened its doors Aug. 23, 2014, in the heart of Atlanta’s sports, entertainment and tourism district. Adjacent to the Georgia World Congress Center and Centennial Olympic Park, the new Hall provides visitors with a highly immersive, interactive and engaging experience using a blend of historic college football artifacts and state-of-the-art, interactive multimedia exhibits. To plan your visit and purchase tickets, visit


NFF Board Member and Alabama athletics director Bill Battle will be the featured speaker at tonight’s Montgomery Quarterback Club meeting at the Montgomery (Ala.) Country Club.

College Football Hall of Fame coach Lloyd Carr was inducted into the University of Michigan’s Hall of Honor.

College Football Hall of Famer and 1987 NFF National Scholar-Athlete Gordie Lockbaum was recently featured in’s “Where Are They Now?” series.

College Football Hall of Fame coach Bobby Bowden recently spoke at Bowling Green State University as part of the Setting the Pace Lecture Series hosted by the College of Education and Human Development.

College Football Hall of Famer Al Blozis (Georgetown) will be posthumously inducted into the National Track & Field Hall of Fame on Thursday, Oct. 29, at the USATF Black Tie & Sneakers Gala at the Armory Track & Field Center in New York City.

2001 William V. Campbell Trophy winner Joaquin Gonzalez was elected to the University of Miami (Fla.) Sports Hall of Fame. Former Hurricane football players Willis McGahee and Kellen Winslow Jr. are also part of the class, which will be formally introduced at halftime of the Miami-Clemson football game on Oct. 24 as part of the “Hall of Fame Game” ceremonies. The 48th Annual UMSHoF Induction Banquet will be held in April 2016.

2002 Campbell Trophy winner Brandon Roberts will be inducted into the Washington University in St. Louis (Mo.) Sports Hall of Fame on Feb. 12.

2006 NFF National Scholar-Athlete Chris Leak (Florida) will be inducted into the Florida-Georgia Hall of Fame on Friday, Oct. 30, as part of the festivities surrounding the Florida-Georgia game. Former Gator Jabar Gaffney and former Bulldogs Rex Robinson and Richard Seymour will also be inducted.

2015 Campbell Trophy semifinalist Jason Vander Laan (Ferris State [Mich.]) set a new NCAA all-division record for most career rushing yards by a quarterback in the Bulldogs’ win against Ohio Dominican. Vander Laan has now rushed for 5,218 yards in 40 career games, surpassing the previous all-time career mark of 5,128 yards set by Wofford's Shawn Graves from 1989-92.

NFF Program Updates

The NFF Scholar-Athlete of the Day, presented by Fidelity Investments, is a daily segment honoring the semifinalists for the 2015 William V. Campbell Trophy, presented by Fidelity Investments. Today’s honoree is Nelson Spruce, a wide receiver at Colorado who maintains a 3.58 GPA in finance/management.

“This Week in College Football History,” which takes a look back at some of college football's landmark moments over the last 147 years, is posted each Friday on the NFF website. Click here to check out the games for Oct. 19-25.

Each week during the season, the NFF produces a comprehensive television schedule for all Division I games complete with date, time, teams and on-air talent listings. Email to receive the listing via email or visit

Presented by

As part of the NFF Little Rock Touchdown Club/Arkansas Chapter’s 2015 Speaker Series, former Texas head coach and current ESPN analyst Mack Brown was yesterday’s guest speaker. Next Monday, Oct. 26, Arkansas State head coach Blake Anderson will be the guest speaker at the Embassy Suites in West Little Rock.

The Touchdown Club of Atlanta-NFF Chapter will be hosting a Touchdown Club Hall of Fame Evening at the College Football Hall of Fame on Nov. 5. The Mississippi State-Missouri game will be shown on the big screen on the field and there will be dinner, a bar and Hall of Fame tours. Click here for ticket information.


College Football Playoff

Fans can start making plans to be a part of the 2016 College Football Playoff (CFP) National Championship in Glendale, Ariz., which will take place Jan. 11, through Playoff Premium’s variety of packages at various price ranges and seating locations. Click here for more information… John E. Hoover of the Tulsa World provided an inside look on how the College Football Playoff Selection Committee ranks its teams. Hoover was among 13 members of the media who took part in a mock CFP selection meeting last week…

New Football Schools

Kennesaw State (5-1, 1-0) defeated Gardner-Webb on Saturday, marking the first time in Big South Conference history that a newcomer to the conference won its first league appearance… East Tennessee State, which returned to the field this fall for the first time since 2003, will honor all of its former football players during its home game on Saturday, Oct. 31, against Warner (Fla.)…


Air Force will host New Mexico in 2016 at historic Cotton Bowl Stadium in Dallas during the State Fair of Texas… North Carolina State and South Carolina will open the 2017 season in the Belk College Kickoff Game at Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte… Kansas State and Stanford have scheduled a home-and-home series for 2016 and 2021…


The Texas-Oklahoma game on Oct. 10 was the most-viewed college football game in Week 6 (4,992,000 viewers), and it was the most-watched Texas-OU game since 2011… IMG released its audio montage for Week 7 of the season, featuring dramatic calls by its team of announcers from around the country… In a deal with Uber, AT&T will be testing live streaming of college football games to a limited number of cars in four cities (Nashville, Detroit, Atlanta and Houston) over the next two months…


Shawn Elliott
was named South Carolina’s interim football coach… Bruce Barnum was given a five-year contract as Portland State head coach… Eastern Michigan Director of Athletics Heather Lyke has signed a contract extension through the 2019-20 season…

Awards & Honors

Two longtime members of the University of Colorado Athletics family, sports information director David Plati and former athletics director and NCAA champion skier Bill Marolt were among 12 honored last week by the University of Colorado Alumni Association at its 86th annual awards ceremony. In attendance were NFF President & CEO and Colorado alumnus Steve Hatchell, the first American to win an Olympic medal in alpine skiing Billy Kidd, 1987 NFF National Scholar-Athlete and current Colorado Director of Sports Medicine Dr. Eric McCarty and College Football Hall of Famer and 1961 NFF National Scholar-Athlete Joe Romig

Pop Warner Little Scholars Inc. is accepting nominations for the Sixth Annual Pop Warner College Football Award, which recognizes a graduating senior who has played youth football and has made a difference on the field, in the classroom and in the community as a college athlete. Nominations are due Oct. 23… 1982 All-American Eric Dickerson (SMU) is the recipient of the 2015 Walter Camp “Alumni Award”…


The Notre Dame at Temple game on Oct. 31 is sold out… Toledo has improved to 6-0 for the first time since 1997… Temple is 6-0 for the first time since 1974 and ranked in the Top 25 for the first time since 1979… Memphis is 6-0 for the first time since 1961 and reached its highest AP ranking in school history… Notre Dame scored 40 points against USC for the first time since its 1977 national championship season…Washington State head coach Mike Leach won the 100th game of his career…TCU won a school-record 15th straight game…

Bowl Games

The Marmot Boca Raton Bowl and Orange Bowl Committee (OBC) will join forces for a second year in which the OBC will expand its operational and media relations assistance and now provide ticket sales and operations support… The Eastern College Athletic Conference announced it will host all six Division III Football Bowl Championship games at Central Connecticut State University Nov. 20-22…


Abilene Christian unveiled new renderings of its on-campus football stadium, which is scheduled to open in 2017… The Hall of Champions at Kyle Field, a massive, 30,000-square-foot virtual sports museum that celebrates the iconic football stadium and Texas A&M Athletics, opened to the public… Colorado State launched a brick campaign for its new on-campus stadium… LSU is set to break ground on the Tiger Athletic Nutrition Center as early as spring 2016… Baylor recently held a formal dedication ceremony for the Beauchamp Athletics Nutrition Center…

Donations and Partnerships

Stony Brook alumnus Glenn Dubin and his wife Eva have pledged a $5 million matching gift toward the school’s new indoor athletic training center… Longtime supporters of Northwestern athletics Mitchell and Valerie Slotnick have made a $5 million gift to the university, and the atrium of the new Ryan Fieldhouse will be named the Mitchell and Valerie Slotnick Family Atrium in their honor… Minnesota State and Orthopaedic & Fracture Clinic announced a multi-year partnership that will include private funding for athletic scholarships and in-kind support services, such as orthopedic evaluation and physician coverage…

Community Service

The ACC has partnered with the United Way of Central Carolinas to support a youth-education based charitable initiative associated with the Dr Pepper ACC Football Championship Game… Alabama State is supporting Southern University football player Devon Gales, who suffered a major neck injury during a game against Georgia on Sept. 26, by wearing helmet stickers for the rest of the season. ASU also presented Southern with a No. 33 Gales jersey during their game last week… The Northwestern State football team joined with other volunteers to provide life-sustaining meals as part of the global Stop Hunger Now Initiative… Miami (Fla.) is offering fans the chance to give back to the men and women that protect our nation with the inaugural Seats For Soldiers program…

More News of Interest

The Head Health Network (HHN) announced a new partnership with the Penn State football team. A major component of the partnership includes utilizing the HHN’s advanced sensor system in Penn State’s innovative concussion research… Goodyear & ESPN have teamed up to celebrate college football traditions with a fan-fueled contest to name the best tradition in the sport. Through Dec. 7, fans can head to to vote for their favorite tradition… Dr. John Risher, who turned 105 on May 11, still exuberantly reports to Scott Stadium's press box at the University of Virginia, where he has been part of the game day statistics crew since the early 1960s… 


One of Chadron State (Neb.)’s most honored football players, J.C. Sollars, passed away Sept. 26. He was 86… Former Lehigh football player and assistant coach George “Fritz” Halfacre passed away Sept. 27. He was 88… Former Marshall football manager Robert “Bob” Woodrum died on Oct. 7. He was 56… Former Houston football player Scott Clark passed away Oct. 12. He was 80… Former Florida wide receiver Tyrone Young died Oct. 15 after a long bout with cancer. He was 55… Former Prairie View A&M offensive lineman Sam Adams passed away. He was 67… Former Minnesota State-Moorhead football player and sheriff’s deputy Steven Sandberg was killed in the line of duty. He was 60… University of Texas mascot Bevo XIV passed away Oct. 16...


Each year, the National Football Foundation invites universities, colleges, conferences and bowl games from across the country to provide support for the NFF programs through its Institutional Academic Membership Program. The program allows the NFF to greatly enhance the power of football's collective voice while actively building a stronger national platform for the game with community leaders, educators and the media. The program is open to all football-playing institutions and conferences at every level of college football and all bowl games, and it reached new levels of support last year. Email Ron Dilatush at to learn about the benefits and how your institution can become a member in 2015. Click here for the 2015 Institutional Academic Members.

Launched in 2008, the NFF National Scholar-Athlete Alumni Association provides a powerful vehicle for past honorees to remain in the vanguard of the NFF’s present efforts. For more information on the program or to enroll for 2015, please email Ron Dilatush at Click here for more information and to see the members of the 2015 NFF National Scholar-Athlete Alumni Association.

The NFF relies, in part, on the support of individuals to fulfill our mission of Building Leaders Through Football. The NFF accepts gifts in a variety of forms. In addition to one-time cash gifts, which can be put to use immediately, pledges also allow donors to make more substantial commitments over a longer period of time in support of our programs. Stock and other property which can be easily liquidated are also options when considering a gift. By making a gift of appreciated stock or property, one may reduce or avoid capital gains. Gifts to the National Football Foundation are tax deductible to the fullest extent of the law. Join us! For more information about how you can support the NFF, call 972-556-1000 or click here.


Oct. 29, 2015 – Announcement of the 2015 finalists for the William V. Campbell Trophy, which comprise the members of the NFF National Scholar-Athlete Class, presented by Fidelity Investments – Irving, Texas

Dec. 7, 2015
– Presentation of the Asa S. Bushnell Cup to the Ivy League Football Players of the Year at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel – New  York City

Dec. 8, 2015
 – NFF Annual Awards Press Conference at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel – New York City

Dec. 8, 2015
– NFF Chapter Awards Luncheon, presented by Under Armour, at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel – New York City

Dec. 8, 2015
– 58th NFF Annual Awards Dinner at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel – New York City

Dec. 8, 2015
– 26th presentation of the William V. Campbell Trophy, presented by Fidelity Investments and prominently displayed at the NYAC, to the nation's top football scholar-athlete at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel – New York City

Dec. 8, 2015
– Induction of the 2015 College Football Hall of Fame Class at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel – New York City

Dec. 31, 2015
– The 11th Annual NFF National Hall of Fame Salute at the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl – Atlanta

Jan. 7, 2015
– Leadership Hall of Fame Induction Dinner – Phoenix

Jan. 8, 2016
– Announcement of the 2016 College Football Hall of Fame Class – Scottsdale, Ariz.

Jan. 11, 2016
–College Football Playoff (CFP) National Championship at University of Phoenix Stadium – Glendale, Ariz. 


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The NFF would like to thank NFF correspondent Bo Carter for his contributions to this report.

NFF Chalktalk items are welcome, and should be submitted to

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