Pretty cool email from media relations:
Allstate and the American Football Coaches Association Announce Twenty-Two College Football Players Named to the 2009 Allstate AFCA Good Works Team;
UCLA sophomore Derrick Coleman is one of the 22 student-athletes being honored. Coleman, who plays college football despite a near total hearing loss in both ears, speaks to youngsters about staying positive despite their hearing issues. He wears hearing aids, including at practices and games, and encourages youngsters not to be embarrassed about wearing the devices.
This summer, a record 106 players were nominated for this prestigious honor by sports information directors on behalf of their teams, surpassing all previous single-season nominee totals since the program began in 1992. From the nominations, a special selection committee named 22 college football players from across the country to the Allstate AFCA Good Works Team.
The two 11-member teams – one composed of players competing in the NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision (I-A) and a combined team representing the NCAA Football Championship Subdivision (I-AA), Divisions II, III and the NAIA – honor players that embody the true spirit of “teamwork” and “giving back” through commendable acts of kindness and community service.
The Allstate AFCA Good Works Team is now in its 18th season to present the award. College Football Hall of Fame coach and ESPN personality Lou Holtz will once again serve as the spokesperson for the 2009 Allstate AFCA Good Works Teams.
“Allstate has been inspired by the commitment and sacrifice these student-athletes have made to better our communities and improve the lives of our neighbors,” said Lisa Cochrane, vice president of marketing for Allstate. “As a proud partner of the AFCA, we feel that it’s our responsibility to shine a spotlight on these young men for the outstanding impact they’ve made off the field.”
While game-saving tackles and last-second field goals may dominate the television highlights, these 22 players have done remarkable things in their communities and changed countless lives in the process, from helping refugees in Afghanistan, to registering people to vote in the Presidential election, to befriending people stricken with disabilities.
“These 22 student-athletes represent thousands of college football players who make a difference in their communities through volunteer service on campus and in their hometowns,” said AFCA Executive Director Grant Teaff. “We’re proud to join Allstate in recognizing these young people who are dedicated to improving the world in which we live.”
Allstate has assembled a high-profile voting panel made up of previous Good Works Team members, including former University of Georgia lineman Matt Stinchcomb and former Tulane University running back Mewelde Moore, as well as prominent college football media personalities, including ESPN’s Lou Holtz and Kirk Herbstreit and CBSSports.com’s Dennis Dodd, to elect this year’s team. Also a part of the selection committee are current AFCA president and San Jose State University head coach Dick Tomey, 1996 AFCA president and former head coach at the United States Air Force Academy Fisher DeBerry, and Allstate vice president Guy Hill.
In order to meet the criteria set forth by Allstate and AFCA, each player must be actively involved and committed to working with a charitable organization, service group or community service while maintaining good academic standing. Candidates must also display sincere concern and reliability, while also having made a favorable impression on the organizations with which they are involved. Neither athletic ability nor on-the-field achievements are among the selection criteria.
The following players have been selected to the 2009 Allstate AFCA Good Works Teams:
Football Bowl Subdivision (I-A)
Name Cl. Pos. School Hometown
Xavier Dye Jr. WR Clemson Greenwood, S.C.
Tim Tebow Sr. QB Florida Jacksonville, Fla.
Jeff Owens Sr. DL Georgia Sunrise, Fla.
Jammie Kirlew Sr. DL Indiana Orlando, Fla.
Darrell Stuckey Sr. DB Kansas Kansas City, Kan.
Zoltan Mesko Sr. P Michigan Twinsburg, Ohio
Andrew Brewer Sr. WR Northwestern Tulsa, Okla.
Taylor Kavanaugh Sr. WR Oregon St. Portland, Ore.
Travis Jones Sr. LB San Jose St. Atascadero, Calif.
Derrick Coleman So. RB UCLA Fullerton, Calif.
Chris Maragos Sr. DB Wisconsin Racine, Wis.
Football Championship Subdivision (I-AA), Divisions II, III, and NAIA
Name Cl. Pos. School Hometown
Joe Goldufsky Sr. DL Beloit Buffalo Grove, Ill.
Reid Velo Jr. WR Bethel (Minn.) Nashwuak, Minn.
David Pesek Sr. QB Colorado School of Mines Centennial, Colo.
Paul Hughes Sr. LB Cumberlands (Ky.) Montezuma, Ga.
Chris Owens Sr. WR Earlham Ft. Thomas, Ky.
Joshua Cain Sr. DB Jacksonville St. Wetumpka, Ala.
Tim Miller Sr. OL Johns Hopkins Ronkonkoma, N.Y.
Richard Bowman Sr. DB North Dakota St. Houston, Texas
Kevin Grayson Jr. WR Richmond Richmond, Va.
Jeffrey Hilliard Sr. DB St. Thomas (Minn.) Woodbury, Minn.
Jacob Rowe Jr. DL Tarleton St. Alvarado, Texas
High Marks: After Christian Ramirez was pulled early to protect his hamstrings, Johnathan Franklin took the reins and ran with them. Franklin had a stunning 60-yard touchdown run en route to a six-carry, 99-yard performance. Milton Knox displayed his bouncability – I’m coining that, by the way – and impressed the coaches.
Low Marks: Derrick Coleman had a rough day behind the starting offensive line and grew frustrated. It seems that Norm Chow only seems comfortable using Ramirez as a receiving threat, as Prince rarely looked into the flats with his other running backs.
During a particularly uncrisp portion of practice, a bright light shone through the clouds.
Atoning for a fumble earlier in the day in individual drills, tailback Derrick Coleman took a handoff and sprinted past everyone into daylight, leaving five defenders in his wake.
On a day without many highlight-reel plays, this one stood out.
Milton Knox also had a nifty run, as it appeared Christian Ramirez was still given a little time off to rest his hamstring.