Steve Hatchell,
President & CEO
Media Contacts:
Phil Marwill | 917-579-4256
Alan Cox | 972-556-1000

College Football is Back!
After a handful of games over the weekend, Week 1 of the 2017 college football season kicks off this week with games every day from Thursday to Labor Day on Monday. The NFF wishes every team, coach, player and anyone associated with the game at any level of play the best of luck this season!
Each week during the season, the NFF produces a comprehensive television schedule for all Division I (FBS and FCS) games complete with date, time, teams and on-air talent listings. Email to sign up for the weekly schedule.

Features in Vol. 59, Issue No. 3, of the National Football Foundation's Footballetter include:
  • Profiles on all 13 members of the star-studded 2017 College Football Hall of Fame Class, which includes Bob Crable (Notre Dame), Marshall Faulk (San Diego State), Kirk Gibson (Michigan State), Matt Leinart (Southern California), Peyton Manning (Tennessee), Bob McKay (Texas), Dat Nguyen (Texas A&M), Adrian Peterson (Georgia Southern), Mike Ruth (Boston College), Brian Urlacher (New Mexico) and coaches Danny Ford (Clemson, Arkansas), Larry Kehres (Mount Union [Ohio]) and Steve Spurrier (Duke, Florida, South Carolina)
  • NFF celebrating its 70th anniversary in 2017
  • Plans for the 150th anniversary of college football in 2019
  • The 13th Annual National Hall of Fame Salute at the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl
  • The presentation of the MacArthur Bowl to Clemson and coach Dabo Swinney
  • The new college football programs launching this fall
  • Record-breaking year for the Hampshire Honor Society
  • Impressive 971 players with undergraduate degrees on college football rosters this fall
  • High School Showcases increase impact through expansion
  • Story on 2017 Toner Award recipient Dan Guerrero, UCLA athletics director 
  • Story on 2017 Schenkel Award recipient Jon Teicher, Voice of the UTEP Miners
The inaugural summit for The William V. Campbell Trophy®, presented by Fidelity Investments, took place Aug. 24-26 at Stanford University, providing the National Football Foundation a powerful new platform for building relationships and connecting nominees for the award with some of the nation's top entrepreneurs and Silicon Valley CEOs.

The event, officially dubbed "The Campbell Trophy Summit" and sponsored by Intuit Inc., paid tribute to Bill Campbell, the award's namesake who passed away in 2016. Campbell, who played and coached at Columbia before a switch to the business world, became one of the most influential individuals in Silicon Valley. The event, which attracted 82 former nominees and featured 44 speakers, served as the perfect vehicle to carry on Bill's legacy of mentoring.

The event kicked off with a reception at Stanford Stadium with welcome remarks from NFF President & CEO Steve Hatchell, NFF Board Member and Pac-12 Commissioner Larry Scott and GSV Asset Management Co-Managing Partner Mark Flynn, a former player at Saint John's (Minn.) who played the lead role in organizing the event. Former nominees traveled from 34 states and the District of Columbia, representing 71 colleges and universities from all divisions, and their current careers ranged from doctors, engineers, lawyers, physicists, college professors, and business and civic leaders.

The panels covered a wide range of topics designed to foster leadership, personal growth and the career development of the attendees, who came from the pool of nominees during the past decade. In addition to the panels, the attendees toured Silicon Valley, including VIP tours of Facebook, Google and Intuit, all companies where Campbell made a profound impact.

Intuit Chairman & CEO Brad Smith is pictured above addressing the attendees at a panel. Photo by Krista Paolella.
The NFF announced the 2017 schedule for the NFF Hall of Fame On-Campus Salutes, presented by Fidelity Investments ® , a leading provider of not-for-profit workplace retirement savings plans in higher education.

The NFF Hall of Fame On-Campus Salutes, which began with the inaugural class in 1951, have become a hallowed tradition, and to this day the singular events remain the first of numerous activities in each inductee's Hall of Fame experience. During the NFF Hall of Fame On-Campus Salutes, the members of the 2017 College Football Hall of Fame Class will return to their alma maters to accept a Hall of Fame plaque that will stay on permanent display at the institution. 

The events take place on the field during a home game, and many inductees cite the experience as the ultimate capstone to their careers, providing them one more chance to take the field and hear the crowd roar their name. Pictured above is the 2016 On-Campus Salute for William Fuller (left) at North Carolina, who was joined on the field by North Carolina athletics director Bubba Cunningham, NFF Board Member Bob Epling and Fidelity VP Sarah Walsh. Photo by Jeffrey Camarati.
As the season gets underway, the month of August provides the perfect time for the National Football Foundation (NFF) & College Hall of Fame to highlight the key rule changes that will take effect during the 2017 college football season. Since 2011, the NFF has partnered with Rogers Redding (above), the national coordinator of College Football Officiating (CFO), to help generate awareness for the rule changes in college football through this release and a series of regular columns distributed by the NFF.
The NFF announced that several members of its NFF National Scholar-Athlete Class, presented by Fidelity Investments, will take center stage during the 16th Annual Learfield Intercollegiate Athletics Forum, which will occur Dec. 6-7 in New York City at the Crowne Plaza Times Square Manhattan.

The participation of the NFF National Scholar-Athletes, who will each claim an $18,000 scholarship Dec. 5 at the 60th NFF Annual Awards Dinner, is part of a partnership that began in 2013 between the NFF and the SportsBusiness Daily/Global/Journal of the Street & Smith's Sports Group to promote the Learfield Intercollegiate Athletics Forum.

Pictured above at last year's panel are 2016 NFF National Scholar-Athletes Brooks Ellis (Arkansas) and DeVon Edwards (Duke) with panel moderator, NFF Vice Chairman and TV news personality Jack Ford. Photo by Marc Bryan-Brown.
On Aug. 26, the NFF presented commemorative footballs to Colorado State University President Tony Frank and Director of Athletics Joe Parker in honor of the school's first game played at its new on-campus stadium. Above, L-R: Mountain West Commissioner Craig Thompson, Frank, Parker and NFF Director of External Relations Will Rudd.
Football Officials: Positions and Responsibilities: Part 1
Rogers Redding
Rogers Redding, the national coordinator of College Football Officiating, provides insights about rules changes and the mindset of college football referees. The CFO is the national professional organization for all football officials who work games at the collegiate level.

Most people watching a football game are aware of the officials only when they throw a flag. Calling fouls is an important part of the officials' job; but probably more important are the myriad of decisions that every official makes on every play, most of which the fans never notice.  In the next few columns, we'll look at each official's title, where they are positioned on the field and what each is generally responsible for. You can tell which official is which by the letter worn on the back of the shirt.

This week we look at three officials: the Referee (R), the Umpire (U), and the Center Judge (C).

REFEREE (R): Probably the easiest official to recognize is the Referee---he is the only one wearing a white cap, and he is the one who makes the officiating announcements. His initial position is in the offensive backfield, wide to the right side of the formation, about 15 yards behind the line of scrimmage. His primary responsibility is the quarterback---what he does and what is done to him. He counts the number of players on offense and is responsible for watching the right tackle on offense. The referee is the crew chief, and thus has general responsibility for overall management of the game.

UMPIRE (U): The Umpire is in the defensive secondary, near the linebackers, about eight to 10 yards off the ball. He is responsible for counting the offense and confirms his count with the referee. His main responsibility is to watch the interior linemen on the offense for false starts, holding, chop blocks, etc. 

CENTER JUDGE (C): He is in the offensive backfield, on the left side of the formation opposite the referee. A primary responsibility is spotting the ball, and he also assists the referee in managing substitutions. His keys are the left tackle on offense and the quarterback. Only crews of eight officials have a center judge; some divisions still use the traditional seven-person crew.

Next week we'll discuss the rest of the on-field officials, and the last column in this series will highlight the officials in the Instant Replay booth.
2016 NFF National Scholar-Athlete Cooper Rush (Central Michigan)
Nomination forms for the NFF's coveted National Scholar-Athlete Awards, presented by Fidelity Investments, have been sent to collegiate sports information directors. The deadline for submissions is this Thursday, Aug. 31.

Eligible candidates must be a senior or graduate student in their final year of eligibility; have a cumulative 3.2 GPA (undergrad); be a starter or significant contributor; and have outstanding leadership and citizenship. Official transcripts as well as a head shot and action photo of the nominee are required.

Each member of the NFF National Scholar-Athlete Class will receive an $18,000 postgraduate scholarship. One honoree will be selected as the winner of the NFF William V. Campbell Trophy®, presented by Fidelity Investments, and will have his scholarship increased to $25,000. All members of the class will be honored at the 60th NFF Annual Awards Dinner at the New York Hilton Midtown on Dec. 5.

For any questions pertaining to the NFF National Scholar-Athlete Awards, please email NFF Director of Special Projects Hillary Jeffries at
The entrance to the College Football Hall of Fame in Atlanta.
Sept. 1, Atlanta's "All-In" Championship Luncheon:  The Atlanta Football Host Committee will celebrate the start of the 2017 college football season with Atlanta's "All In" Championship Luncheon at the Hall. The special event will offer attendees insights into the upcoming season from members of ESPN College GameDay and ABC's Saturday Night Football. Guests will hear directly from College Football Playoff (CFP) administrators on what to expect this January when Atlanta hosts the CFP National Championship. The final segment will provide guests with an exciting look at the new state-of-the-art Mercedes-Benz Stadium opening days before the luncheon.

Sept. 1, Book Signing at the Hall: Join the Hall on Friday, Sept. 1, from 2-4 p.m. as it hosts authors Phil Savage and Ray Glier for a book signing of "4th and Goal Every Day: Alabama's Relentless Pursuit of Perfection." The book will be available for purchase in Hall's gift shop.

Sept. 1, FunnyMaine Comedy Show: Comedian Jermaine "FunnyMaine" Johnson comes to the Hall on Friday, Sept. 1, at 7 p.m. Johnson is a lifelong fan of the Alabama Crimson Tide and his "How Bama Fans" videos on Facebook and YouTube have taken the southeast by storm! The son of an Alabama pastor, he grew up learning to love and do for others around him as seen through his work with area youth and the Lupus Foundation of America. FunnyMaine is one of America's rising comedy stars, and his live performances are clean and appropriate for all ages. Tickets are $50 and include admission to the show plus a ticket to come back to tour to the College Football Hall of Fame. Click here for tickets.

Tailgate Saturdays Built by The Home Depot: Join the Hall every Saturday this season from 9 a.m.-6 p.m. for Tailgate Saturdays Built by The Home Depot. Watch the top matchups of the week on the Hall's 36-foot HD video board while you enjoy beverages and tailgate games on the field. Participate in the GameDay Desk contest for a chance to win prizes. Visit the Hall's Twitter page @cfbhall each week and vote for the matchups you want to see on Saturday! There's no better way to spend your Saturday's this Fall than at the Hall.
About the College Football Hall of Fame: The College Football Hall of Fame and Chick-fil-A Fan Experience opened its doors Aug. 23, 2014, in the heart of Atlanta's sports, entertainment and tourism district. Adjacent to 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
Quote Of The Week
The Blitz
College Football Hall of Fame coach  Don Nehlen and Hall of Fame coach nominee Frank Beamer will serve as honorary captains during the Sept. 3 game between West Virginia and Virginia Tech at FedExField in Landover, Md.

A memorial patch honoring College Football Hall of Fame coach Dick MacPherson will be worn by the 2017 Syracuse football team and displayed on the Carrier Dome field throughout the season.

Nebraska will posthumously retire the jerseys of eight of its former players in the College Football Hall of Fame, honoring them during the Sept. 2 season opener against Arkansas State. The players include Forrest BehmGuy Chamberlin, Sam Francis, Wayne MeylanBobby ReynoldsGeorge SauerClarence Swanson and Ed Weir.

Louisiana Tech will retire College Football Hall of Famer Fred Dean's No. 70 during halftime of its Sept. 2 season-opener against Northwestern State.

College Football Hall of Fame coach Bobby Bowden will be honored with the fourth annual Tom Osborne Legacy Award during the Outland Trophy Awards Dinner Jan. 10, 2018, at the Downtown DoubleTree Hotel in Omaha, Neb.

This year's Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game between Tennessee and Georgia Tech will celebrate Bobby Dodd throughout the game on Monday, Sept. 4. Dodd is one of only four individuals to be elected to the College Football Hall of Fame as both a player (Tennessee) and as a coach (Georgia Tech).

Fresno State  will retire  the jersey of 2013 NFF National Scholar-Athlete Derek Carr, the Bulldogs' all-time leading passer, at a special event during halftime of the team's home opener on Sept. 2.

Arizona State will dedicate its game on Sept. 9 against San Diego State to College Football Hall of Fame coach Frank Kush, who passed away last month.

1990 Campbell Trophy ® winner Chris Howard (Air Force), now the president at Robert Morris University and a member of the College Football Playoff selection committee, talked with the Sporting News prior to the inaugural Campbell Trophy Summit at Stanford.

2009 NFF Distinguished American Award recipient and 1968 NFF National Scholar-Athlete Billy Payne (Georgia) announced he will retire as Chairman of Augusta National Golf Club and the Masters Tournament on Oct. 16.

2010 NFF National Scholar-Athlete and current SEC Network analyst Greg McElroy (Alabama) will host  a new show, Thinking Out Loud, which will air on the network Monday nights at 7 p.m. ET from Sept. 4 - Dec. 4.

1995 NFF National Scholar-Athlete Danny Kanell (Florida State) will be a new daily host on SiriusXM's 24/7 college sports channel. Kanell also joined FOX Sports' college football game coverage. 

ESPN College GameDay Built by The Home Depot , the 2006 NFF Outstanding Contribution to Amateur Football Award recipient,  will bookend  the 2017 college football season in Atlanta. The three-hour premier college football pregame show (9 a.m. - noon ET) will air from International Plaza outside the new Mercedes-Benz Stadium on Saturday, Sept. 2, in advance of the 2017 Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game between Florida State and Alabama. Then, in early 2018, College GameDay will return to the stadium prior to ESPN's airing of the College Football Playoff National Championship on Monday, Jan. 8.

SEC Network's traveling pregame show, SEC Nation, will kick off its fourth season on Saturday, Sept. 2, from Arlington, Texas, for the game between Florida and Michigan. 2009 Campbell Trophy ®  winner Tim Tebow (Florida) will continue his role as an analyst on the show. 

A stamp honoring Rev. Theodore Hesburgh, the late University of Notre Dame president and 1975 NFF Distinguished American Award recipient, will be unveiled Sept. 1 during a ceremony on Notre Dame's campus in Purcell Pavilion at the Joyce Center. Former Secretary of State and 2015 NFF Gold Medal recipient Dr. Condoleezza Rice will speak during the event.
Over The Middle

The  NFF Arkansas Chapter/Little Rock Touchdown Club 's  2017 speaker series continued Monday with  College Football Hall of Fame quarterback and 2017 Hall of Fame electee as a coach, Steve Spurrier. The Sept. 5 event will feature three speakers: College Football Hall of Famer and former NFL player and coach Mike Ditka (Pittsburgh); College Football Hall of Fame nominee and former Chicago Bear Dan Hampton (Arkansas); and former Ouachita Baptist (Ark.) and Dallas Cowboys safety Cliff Harris.

Northeastern University will celebrate the life of longtime sports information director Jack Grinold on Sept. 6 at Matthews Arena on its campus in Boston. Grinold, who passed away in April, was one of the charter members of the NFF Jack Grinold/Eastern Massachusetts Chapter, which was named in his honor in 2005. A longtime supporter of the NFF, he received a Chapter Leadership Award in 1996.

The NFF Nebraska Chapter will hold its Hall of Fame Banquet Sept. 15 at Memorial Stadium in Lincoln, Neb. The NFF Nebraska Chapter, which sponsors the Nebraska Football Hall of Fame, announced the 2017 class, including former Nebraska players Chad Kelsay, Donnie McGhee, Zac Taylor and Randy Theiss. The class also includes Brad Ottis from Wayne State. Tom and Rhonda Peed will be honored with the Clarence E. Swanson Meritorious Service Award, and Nebraska Athletic Department administrators Chris Anderson and Pat Logsdon will accept Lyell Bremser Special Merit Awards.

The Touchdown Club of Atlanta-NFF Chapter will hold an Awards Luncheon Sept. 18 at 103 West in Atlanta. NFF Board Member and SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey will speak.

The NFF Tom Lombardo/St. Louis Chapter will kick off its 2017-18 luncheon series Sept. 20 at Lombardo's Restaurant (airport location). The guest speaker will be Missouri athletics director Jim Sterk.

The NFF Western Massachusetts Chapter will host the Annual College Press-Coach Luncheon on Sept. 20 at the  Student Prince restaurant in Springfield, Mass. Area college coaches will discuss their teams at the event.
Two-Minute Drill
New Football Schools

Two of this year's four new football programs play their first games this week. Texas Wesleyan returns to the field for the first time in 75 years when it plays at McPherson (Kan.) on Saturday at 4 p.m. ET. UAB returns after a two-year absence Saturday when it hosts Alabama A&M at 3:30 p.m. ET on Stadium... St. Andrews (N.C.) lost at at Lindsey Wilson (Ky.) in its first game on Aug. 26... Dean (Mass.) will host its first game as it transitions into a four-year institution on Sept. 9 when it hosts Husson (Maine) at Noon ET... 


Longtime Stanford football radio broadcaster and former San Jose State athletics director Bob Murphy passed away Aug. 22. He was 86... Former Pittsburgh cornerback Ed Sharockman passed away Aug. 19. He was 77... Former Whitman (Wash.) head football coach Doc Thomsen passed away Aug. 20. He was 103... Former Tennessee football captain Buddy Fisher passed away Aug. 21. He was 75... Former Delaware State athletics director John C. Martin passed away Aug. 24. He was 85... Former Charleston Southern wide receiver Kwame Krakue died Aug. 26. He was 29... Former Kentucky football player Talbott Todd passed away Aug. 27. He was 73... Stetson defensive back Nicholas Adam Blakely died Aug. 28. He was 19... Former Oklahoma quarterback Bobby Boyd passed away Aug. 28. He was 79...

More News of Interest

The Army-Navy Game will be held in Philadelphia for five of the next six years (2018, 2019, 2020 and 2022) while the site of the 2021 game will be MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J... Johns Hopkins (Md.) announced an agreement with NFF-partner Under Armour...
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NFF Key Dates
Sept. 5, 2017  - Release of the first FWAA-NFF Super 16 Poll of the regular season. The first poll of the season will be released Tuesday, Sept. 5, to account for the Labor Day games, and the final poll will be released Dec. 3, the day after the conference championship games. Polls during the season will be released on Sundays at 11:30 a.m. ET. - Via Press Release
Sept. 27, 2017 - Announcement of the 2017 semifinalists for The William V. Campbell Trophy®, presented by Fidelity Investments - Via Press Release
Nov. 1, 2017  -  Announcement of the 2017 William V. Campbell Trophy® finalists, who comprise the 2017 NFF National Scholar-Athlete Class, presented by Fidelity Investments - Via Press Release
Dec. 4, 2017  - Ivy League's Asa S. Bushnell Cup Announcement, presented by the Pasadena Tournament of Roses, at the New York Hilton Midtown - New  York City
Dec. 5, 2017  - NFF Annual Awards Press Conference at the New York Hilton Midtown - New York City
Dec. 5, 2017  - NFF Chapter Awards Luncheon, presented by Under Armour, at the New York Hilton Midtown - New York City
Dec. 5, 2017  - 60th NFF Annual Awards Dinner at the New York Hilton Midtown - New York City, including the induction of the 2017 College Football Hall of Fame Class and the 28th presentation of The William V. Campbell Trophy®, presented by Fidelity Investments and prominently displayed at the New York Athletic Club.
Dec. 6, 2017 - Campbell Trophy® Luncheon at the New York Athletic Club - New York City
Jan. 1, 2018 The 13th Annual NFF National Hall of Fame Salute during the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl - Atlanta, Ga.
Jan. 8, 2018 - Announcement of the 2018 College Football Hall of Fame Class during festivities prior to College Football Playoff National Championship - Atlanta, Ga.
Jan. 8, 2018 - College Football Playoff National Championship at Mercedes-Benz Stadium - Atlanta, Ga. 
NFF Information
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The NFF would like to thank NFF correspondent Bo Carter for his contributions to this report.
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