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College football news and notes

From the National Football Foundation

NFF High School Scholar-Athletes Prepare for College Football

The National Football Foundation (NFF) announced last week that more than 400 NFF High School Scholar-Athletes began their college football careers this month at campuses across the country.

Forty-nine NFF chapters reported that a total of 446 of their 2012 scholar-athletes will play college football this year. The scholar-athletes are vying for positions across all levels of the NCAA and NAIA, including 63 Football Bowl Subdivision institutions from all 11 conferences as well as independents Army, BYU, Navy and Notre Dame. All eight Ivy League schools have at least three honorees on their rosters with a total of 51 members of the 2012 NFF high school class landing a spot at one of the prestigious institutions.

To read the full release, please click here.


THE BLITZ

Sports Business Journal has ranked the top 25 most influential executives in college football in its most recent issue. NFF Board Member and SEC Commissioner Mike Slive came in at the top of the list, while NFF Board Member and Big Ten Commissioner Jim Delany ranked No. 2. 2009 NFF Gold Medal winner and Nike Co-Founder and Chairman Phil Knight checked in at No. 8. NFF Board Member and Big 12 Commissioner Bob Bowlsby ranked No. 9, and NFF Board Member and IMG Sports and Entertainment President George Pyne shared the No. 13 spot. NFF Board Member and Under Armour Founder and CEO Kevin Plank ranked No. 20, while NFF Board Member and former Big 12 Interim Commissioner Chuck Neinas placed No. 21

College Football Hall of Fame coach Darrell Royal and his wife Edith will be Texas' honorary captains for the Longhorns game with Wyoming on Saturday (8 p.m. ET, LHN).

2012 NFF Hampshire Honor Society member Russell Wilson (Wisconsin) was named the starting quarterback of the Seattle Seahawks last week.

A tribute to College Football Hall of Fame coach Eddie Robinson was held Saturday night in Dallas with College Football Hall of Famer Doug Williams (Grambling), SMU head coach June Jones, former Grambling players James "Shack" Harris and Everson Walls and Robinson's wife, Doris, and son, Eddie, Jr., in attendance.

College Football Hall of Famer Alan Page (Notre Dame) is featured in the August issue of Delta Sky Magazine.

New football school Bluefield College (Va.) played its first football game last week versus the University of Pikeville (Ky.). The Rams will host Georgetown College (Ky.) on Saturday.

New football school Lindenwood University - Belleville (Ill.) will host its first football game against Avila University (Mo.) on Saturday at 2 p.m. ET.

New football school Misericordia University (Pa.) will play its first football game at Gettysburg College (Pa.) on Saturday at 1 p.m. ET.

New football school Point University (Ga.) played the first football game in school history at Edward Waters College (Fla.) on Saturday. The Skyhawks will take on the West Georgia at 7 p.m. ET on Saturday.

The latest issue of SportsBusiness Journal ran a feature story on the five schools launching football this year, citing the NFF's July report on the number of colleges adding football across the nation.

NFF Board Member Kevin Plank and 2008 NFF National High School Scholar-Athlete Andrew Luck (Stanford) were interviewed by Bloomberg TV last week.

The NFF comprehensive television schedule will be posted at FootballFoundation.org on Thursday, complete with game times, network and broadcast crews for the entirety of NCAA Division I.

The first edition of This Week in College Football History was released Monday at FootballFoundation.org. This week's Featured Moment highlights College Football Hall of Fame coach Tom Osborne leading Nebraska past College Football Hall of Fame coach Don Nehlen and West Virginia. Click here to see video of this game and other moments throughout the game's history.

Florida and Southern Miss have joined the NFF as Institutional Academic Members. The NFF Institutional Academic Membership 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 at every level of college football.

The following former NFF National Scholar-Athletes have joined the NFF National Scholar-Athlete Alumni Association: Gary Beban (UCLA), David Berdardinelli (Bucknell), Dr. Robert Burger (Notre Dame), Dr. Gabriel Cousens (Amherst [Mass.]), Vince Ferragamo (Nebraska), Kevin Fox (Princeton), Dr. Michael Gilmore (Florida), Tim Green (Syracuse), Pat Haden (USC), Jim Hansen (Colorado), David Reynolds (Hastings [Neb.]), John Sciarra (UCLA), Randall Stockham (Utah State), David Wonderlick (Susquehanna [Pa.]) and Michael Wynn (Massachusetts).

The NFF is accepting nominations for the 2012 NFF National Scholar-Athlete awards. Please contact NFF director of special projects Hillary Jeffries at hjeffries@footballfoundation.com or (972) 556-1000 to nominate a scholar-athlete. The deadline for nominations is Friday, Aug. 31.

You can keep up with the NFF on Twitter at Twitter.com/NFFNetwork and on Facebook.com/NFFNetwork.

Stay involved with the game. Become an NFF member here.


OVER THE MIDDLE

The NFF Valley of the Sun (Ariz.) Chapter will host its ninth annual golf tournament on Sept. 10 at Orange Tree Resort in Scottsdale, Ariz. Registration and more information can be found at AZNFF.com. The chapter will also launch a luncheon series on Tuesday. . . . NFF Jack Grinold/Eastern Massachusetts Chapter President Roger Crosley has been named the Director of Communications for the East Coast Athletic Conference. . . . The NFF Tom Lombardo/St. Louis Chapter will host its monthly luncheon on Sept. 19 at Lombardo's Airport Restaurant. St. Louis Rams General Manager Les Snead will be the guest speaker.


TWO-MINUTE DRILL

Scheduling

Washington will host Montana on Sept. 2, 2017.

Media

ESPN released its master college football schedule, including more than 450 games, last week. . . . Portland State will be televised nine times in the Portland, Ore., area throughout the 2012 season. . . . The Big 12 has announced its early season television selections. . . . Eastern Washington at Idaho will air on ESPN3 at 9 p.m. ET on Thursday. . . . The Sun Belt has announced 12 additional selections to air on ESPN3. . . . Western Michigan has added WBFX-FM to its football affiliates list in the Grand Rapids, Mich., area. . . . Clear Channel Media and Entertainment Denver have signed a four-year extension to remain the exclusive rights-holder for Colorado athletics. . . . Northern Arizona has announced its 2012 television schedule. . . . Former Texas Southern football player Michael Strahan has been named the co-host of Live with Kelly Ripa. . . . Northern Illinois has renewed its agreement to keep WSCR-AM as the Huskies' radio affiliate in Chicago.

Community Service

Last week, Wisconsin football players helped hand out more than 1,600 backpacks filled with school supplies to Madison, Wis., area students at the Success Back-to-School Picnic. . . . Louisiana Tech has partnered with the Shreveport-Bossier Rescue Mission to conduct a sock drive during the Bulldogs' game with Texas A&M on Thursday. . . . Iowa head coach Kirk Ferentz, Iowa State head coach Paul Rhoads, Kansas head coach Charlie Weis, Kansas State head coach Bill Snyder, Nebraska head coach Bo Pelini and Northern Iowa head coach Mark Fraley are competing to recruit the most mentors for the National Mentoring Partnership. . . . Several BYU football players granted a Springville, Utah, man's final wish last week. . . . Memphis, Mississippi State and Ole Miss will combine with Kroger for the 2012 "Million Meals Challenge" in an effort to donate one million meals throughout Mississippi and Western Tennessee.

Facilities

The Princeton Review has ranked Army's athletic facilities as the best in the nation. . . . Arizona State unveiled a new look for its Carson Student-Athlete Center last week. . . . California will celebrate its return to the renovated Memorial Stadium with a series of events throughout the fall. . . . LSU will showcase an improved Tiger Stadium at its season-opener versus North Texas on Saturday (7 p.m. ET, ESPNU).

Miscellaneous

USC ranks first in the Football Writers Association of America's 2012 Grantland Rice Super 16 Poll. . . . Purdue has announced a new social rewards program. . . . Former Missouri wide receiver Jeremy Maclin has created the Jeremy Maclin Scholarship for Tigers student-athletes from Missouri that carry a 3.5 GPA or better. . . . Sports Illustrated writer Mark Beech's latest book, When Saturday Mattered Most: The Last Golden Season of Army Football, will be released Sept. 18. . . . Auburn has established the James Owens Courage Award. Owens became the first African-American football player in Tigers history in 1969. . . . Former football players Nate Burleson and Mike Maxwell have been selected to the University of Nevada Athletics Hall of Fame. . . . Arizona State will honor Emerson Harvey, who became the school's first African-American football player in 1937, throughout the season. The Sun Devils will wear No. 57 decals on their helmets all season, and the school will recognize Harvey's family members against Northern Arizona on Thursday. . . . Former Mississippi State football player Kent Hull will be added to the Ring of Honor at Davis-Wade Stadium before the Bulldogs' game with Auburn on Sept. 8. . . . The Pioneer Football League will receive an automatic bid to the NCAA Division I Football Championship beginning in 2013. . . . Oregon has debuted a new uniform for the 2012 campaign. . . . Kansas State announced last week that it received $25.8 million in total gifts during the 2011-12 athletic year, reaching a new school record. . . . Colorado will host a Parade of Buffs on Sept. 27. . . . Lisa and Douglas Coleman have provided a $10 million gift to California athletics. . . . USC has sold out Saturday's game with Hawaii (7:30 p.m. ET, FOX). . . . Notre Dame has commenced celebration of the Fighting Irish's 125th year of football. Notre Dame will also hold several events this weekend in conjunction of the Shamrock Series game with Navy on Saturday (9 a.m. ET, CBS). . . . The Senior Bowl has released its first-ever watch list. . . . Memphis, Tenn., area AutoZone locations are offering $5 tickets to Saturday's Tennessee - Martin at Memphis (7 p.m. ET). . . . Southern Living magazine is holding a vote through Oct. 1 to determine the top tailgating school in college football.

Obituaries

Former LSU running back Steve Van Buren passed away Thursday, August 23. He was 91. . . . Former Memphis quarterback Russ Vollmer passed away Monday, August 20. He was 70. 




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