|IOWA vs. NORTHERN ILLINOIS|
|DATE||Saturday, Sept. 1 | 2:40 p.m. CT|
|LOCATION||Iowa City, Iowa | Kinnick Stadium (69,250)|
|RADIO | LISTEN||Hawkeye Radio Network | Hawkeye All-Access|
1st and 10
1: Kirk Ferentz is in his 20th season as Iowa’s head coach and is one win from becoming the program’s all-time winningest coach. Ferentz (143-97) tied Hayden Fry (143-89-6) as the Hawkeyes’ all-time winningest football coach with a 27-20 win at the 2017 Pinstripe Bowl. Fry is expected to be in attendance Sept. 1.
2: Ferentz has 143 overall wins and 86 Big Ten wins as Iowa’s head coach. The 143 wins in all games coached as a member of the Big Ten Conference rank fifth in league history. The 86 conference wins rank sixth among the conference’s all-time winningest coaches in Big Ten games.
3: Kirk Ferentz’s first win as Iowa’s head coach was Sept. 18, 1999 against Northern Illinois. The Hawkeyes defeated the Huskies, 24-0, at Kinnick Stadium. Special Teams coordinator LeVar Woods, then a senior linebacker, returned a blocked field goal 87 yards for a fourth-quarter touchdown in the game. RB Ladell Betts rushed for 174 yards and a touchdown, and QB Randy Reiners passed for 145 yards and scored a rushing touchdown.
4: Preseason All-American TE Noah Fant has 12 career touchdown receptions, tying WR Kevonte Martin-Manley for 12th all-time in program history. His next touchdown reception will move him into a tie for 10th place with WR Quinn Early and TE Mike Flagg. Flagg’s 13 receiving touchdowns is a career record for Hawkeye tight ends.
5: QB Nate Stanley returns his top two touchdown targets from a near record-breaking season in 2017. Stanley threw 26 touchdowns last year, one shy of tying the single-season record held by Chuck Long (27, 1985). Of those 26 touchdown passes, TE Noah Fant caught a team-high 11 touchdown passes, followed by WR Nick Easley (4). In total, 20 of Stanley’s 26 touchdown targets return in 2018. TE T.J. Hockenson caught three touchdowns from Stanley in 2017, and WR Ihmir Smith-Marsette pulled in two.
6: For the first time in Kirk Ferentz’s 20 seasons as Iowa head coach, the Hawkeyes open the season without a linebacker with a single career start. Starting linebackers Amani Jones, Kristian Welch, and Nick Niemann have appeared in 25, 24, and 13 career games, respectively, but all three are expected to make their first career starts Sept. 1 against Northern Illinois. The trio has a combined 24 career tackles, 848 fewer career tackles than the three starting linebackers from 2017 (Josey Jewell 437; Bo Bower, 234; Ben Niemann, 201).
7: Running backs coach Derrick Foster enters his first season on Iowa’s staff in charge of a position group that graduated 75 percent of its rushing yards in 2017, and has a combined 65 career carries and one career start. Sophomores Toren Young and Ivory Kelly-Martin are the top returners. Young carried the ball 45 times for 193 yards last season, and Kelly-Martin rushed for 184 yards and three TDs on 20 carries.
8: Iowa is 95-32-2 (.744) in season-opening games, including a 16-3 mark under coach Kirk Ferentz. The Hawkeyes won 12 straight season openers from 2001-12 before falling 30-27 to Northern Illinois in 2013.
9: Iowa is 97-29-2 (.766) in home openers. Iowa is 16-3 in season openers since 1999 and 16-1 since 2001. The Hawkeyes averaged 32.9 ppg in the 16 wins, and 11.3 ppg in the three losses.
10: For the second time in as many years, a Tigerhawk has found a home at Kinnick Stadium. In June 2018, a Tigerhawk logo and block IOWA lettering were added to the water tower that sits outside the northeast corner of Kinnick Stadium. The Tigerhawk faces southwest. The block IOWA faces northwest. The Tigerhawk logo was added to midfield prior to the 2017 season.
Iowa has played 1,233 games since beginning football in 1889. Iowa’s overall record is 641-553-39 (.535). That includes a 400-219-16 (.643) record in home games, a 241-334-23 (.421) record in games away from Iowa City, a 324-374-25 (.465) mark in Big Ten games and a 284-184-15 (.607) record in Kinnick Stadium.
QB Nate Stanley returns his top two touchdown targets from a near record-breaking season in 2017. Stanley threw 26 touchdowns last year, one shy of tying the single-season record held by Chuck Long (27, 1985). Of those 26 touchdown passes, TE Noah Fant caught a team-high 11 touchdown passes last year, followed by WR Nick Easley (4). In total, 20 of Stanley’s 26 touchdown targets return in 2018. TE T.J. Hockenson caught three touchdowns from Stanley in 2017, and WR Ihmir Smith-Marsette pulled in two touchdown receptions.
FOSTER INHERITS FRESH LEGS
Running backs coach Derrick Foster enters his first season on Iowa’s staff in charge of a position group that graduated 75 percent of its rushing yards in 2017, and has a combined 65 career carries and one career start.
Sophomore RB Toren Young is Iowa’s top returning rusher, carrying the ball 45 times for 193 yards last season. Sophomore RB Ivory Kelly-Martin rushed for 184 yards and three touchdowns on 20 carries in 2017.
Young started Week 6 against Illinois in 2017, carrying eight times for 32 yards. It is his only career start.
Kelly-Martin and Young are listed 1-2 on the Iowa depth chart, with Kelly-Martin expected to make his first career start Week 1. They are supported by sophomore transfer Mekhi Sargent, who rushed for 1,449 yards and 14 touchdowns last season at Iowa Western Community College. The rest of the position group includes redshirt freshman Kyshaun Bryan, and true freshmen Henry Geil and Samson Evans.
Young and Kelly-Martin both made their collegiate debuts in Week 3 (vs. North Texas) last season. Kelly-Martin, then a true freshman, rushed 11 times for 74 yards and two touchdowns (2, 6). He became the first Iowa true freshman with two or more rushing touchdowns in a game since Marcus Coker in 2010 (vs Missouri).
Iowa graduated running backs Akrum Wadley (1,109 yards) and James Butler (396 yards) in 2017. The duo combined for 1,505 rushing yards in 2017.
NEW FACES IN THE CROWD
For the first time in Kirk Ferentz’s 20 seasons as Iowa head coach, the Hawkeyes open the season without a linebacker with a single career start. Starting linebackers Amani Jones, Kristian Welch, and Nick Niemann have appeared in 25, 24, and 13 career games, respectively, but all three are expected to make their first career starts Sept. 1 against Northern Illinois. The trio has a combined 24 career tackles, 848 fewer career tackles than Iowa’s three starting linebackers in 2017 (Josey Jewell 437; Bo Bower, 234; Ben Niemann, 201).
The last time Ferentz had this little starting experience at the linebacker position was in 2014. That year, Quinton Alston, Bo Bower, and Reggie Spearman were Iowa’s starting linebackers in the season opener. Only Alston had a previous career start (2012 at Michigan).
In Ferentz’s first season in 1999, the opening day starting linebackers — LeVar Woods, Aaron Kampman, and Derrick Davison — had two career starts combined. Both starts belonged to Kampman, who started the final two games in 1998.
FERENTZ TIES FRY, MOVES UP BIG TEN CHARTS
Kirk Ferentz (143-97) tied Hayden Fry (143-89-6) as the Hawkeyes’ all-time winningest football coach with a 27-20 win at the Pinstripe Bowl. Ferentz has 143 overall wins and 86 Big Ten wins as Iowa’s head coach. The 86 conference wins rank sixth among the conference’s all-time winningest coaches in Big Ten games.
Ferentz’s 143 wins in all games coached as a member of the Big Ten Conference rank fifth in league history. Iowa has at least eight wins in three straight seasons and owns a 28-12 mark from 2015-17.
Both Ferentz (143, 86) and Fry (143, 96) rank in the top six in overall wins and Big Ten wins. Only Iowa and Michigan have two coaches ranked in the top 10 of both win categories (Bo Schembechler 194, 143; and Lloyd Carr 122, 81).
Iowa is the only school in the country to have two head football coaches since 1979.
FERENTZ TOPS IN LONGEVITY
Kirk Ferentz enters his 20th season as Iowa’s head football coach. He is the longest tenured active head coach in college football. Ferentz was named Iowa head coach on Dec. 2, 1998. Gary Patterson of TCU is No. 2 in coaching tenure. Patterson’s first year with the Horned Frogs was 2001. Among Big Ten coaches, only Pat Fitzgerald (2006) and Mark Dantonio (2007) have been at their current schools for 10 seasons or more. Iowa is the only school to have just two head football coaches since 1979.
Defensive coordinator Phil Parker and strength and conditioning coach Chris Doyle are also in their 20th seasons on Iowa’s staff. Defensive line coach Reese Morgan joined the staff in 1999 and is in his 19th season. Quarterbacks coach Ken O’Keefe was on Ferentz’s original coaching staff before he left for the NFL following the 2011 season. He returned to Iowa in 2017 to coach Iowa’s quarterbacks.
Ferentz is the only Division I coach to coach three sons. Brian Ferentz, a former Hawkeye letterman and captain (2003-05), is in his seventh season on Iowa’s coaching staff. James Ferentz was a three-year starter on the Hawkeye offensive line and a team captain before graduating in 2013. Steven was an offensive lineman and letterwinner in 2015 and 2016.
TIGERHAWK ADDED TO WATER TOWER
For the second time in as many years, a Tigerhawk has found a home at Kinnick Stadium. In June 2018, a Tigerhawk logo and block IOWA lettering were added to the water tower that sits outside the northeast corner of Kinnick Stadium.
The Tigerhawk faces southwest, overlooking Kinnick Stadium, and stretches 24 feet wide and measures 15 feet, 5.75 inches in height. The block IOWA lettering is on the northwest side of the water tower and measures 24 feet by 9 1/8 feet. The height of the water tower tank is 70 feet.
The images were added one year after a Tigerhawk logo was placed at midfield at Kinnick Stadium.
IN THE RANKINGS
Two of Iowa’s 2018 opponents are ranked in the top 10 of the AP preseason poll. The Hawkeyes host No. 4 Wisconsin Sept. 22, and travel to No. 10 Penn State Oct. 27.
These are Iowa’s most recent wins versus nationally-ranked opponents:
Home: 55-24 over #3 Ohio State, 11/4/17
40-10 over #15 Nebraska, 11/25/16
14-13 over #2 Michigan, 11/12/16
Road: 40-10 over #20 Northwestern, 10/17/15
10-6 over #18 Wisconsin, 10/3/15
38-28 over #24 Michigan, 10/16/10
Neutral: 27-24 over #12 Missouri, Insight Bowl, 12/28/10
24-14 over #9 Georgia Tech, Orange Bowl, 1/5/10
30-25 over #11 LSU, Capital One Bowl, 1/1/05
YOUR ATTENTION PLEASE
TE Noah Fant was one of 10 conference players named to the Big Ten Preseason Honors List. Fant had 30 receptions last season, including a team-high 11 touchdowns, tied for most in the country among FBS tight ends and the most by a Hawkeye since Marvin McNutt caught 12 touchdown passes in 2012. Fant led Iowa and all FBS tight ends with 16.5 yards per catch in 2017.
Fant has 12 career touchdown receptions, tying WR Kevonte Martin-Manley for 12 all-time in program history. His next touchdown reception will move him into a tie for 10th place with WR Quinn Early and TE Mike Flagg. Flagg’s 13 receiving touchdowns is a career record for Hawkeye tight ends.
Iowa is 8-1 all-time against Northern Illinois. The Hawkeyes won the first eight games in the series before Northern Illinois snapped that streak with a 30-27 win at Kinnick Stadium in the 2013 season opener.
- Iowa is 6-1 against the Huskies at Kinnick Stadium. The other two games in the series were played at Soldier Field in Chicago.
- Coach Kirk Ferentz’s first victory as Iowa’s head coach came against the Huskies in 1999 (24-0).
- The Hawkeyes are 3-0 all-time in games played on Sept. 1, with two of those wins coming against Northern Illinois (2007, 2012).
- Iowa wide receivers coach Kelton Copeland was on the Northern Illinois coaching staff from 2013-16.
FILLING HOLES IN TAKEAWAYS
Iowa led the nation with 21 interceptions in 2017. The Hawkeyes return nine of the 21 thefts, led by safeties Jake Gervase (3) and Amani Hooker (2). Returners DE Parker Hesse, S Geno Stone, LB Kristian Welch, and DL Brady Reiff also recorded interceptions last season. Iowa lost the nation’s leader in interceptions, Josh Jackson (8), and Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year, Josey Jewell (2), to the NFL. Both players were consensus All-Americans.
IOWA LEADERSHIP GROUP
The University of Iowa football program has 12 players among its 2018 Leadership Group. The group includes six seniors, five juniors, and one sophomore. The Leadership Group votes on the weekly game day captains, is involved in team decision-making throughout the season, and provides feedback to the head coach. Players were selected by team vote.
The group consists of seniors WR Nick Easley, DB Jake Gervase, DE Parker Hesse, LB Aaron Mends, DL Matt Nelson, and OL Keegan Renders, juniors DB Amani Hooker, LB Amani Jones, DL Anthony Nelson, FB Brady Ross, and QB Nate Stanley, and sophomore RB Toren Young.
BACK ON CAMPUS
Four former players are on the University of Iowa football staff in 2018. Brian Ferentz, a three-year letterman from 2003-05, is in his seventh year on staff, his second as offensive coordinator.
LeVar Woods, a three-year letterman from 1998-2000, enters his 11th year on the Iowa staff. Woods was named Special Teams Coordinator in 2017. He coached tight ends from 2015-17 and linebackers from 2012-14. He rejoined the program as an administrative assistant in 2008.
Kelvin Bell joined the Iowa program as a defensive lineman in 2000, but had his career cut short due to injury. He returned to the program as a graduate assistant and served as director of on-campus recruiting from 2012-13, before being named recruiting coordinator and defensive assistant coach in February, 2016.
Broderick Binns, a four-year letterman from 2008-11, was named director of player development in April, 2016. Binns previously served as a graduate assistant in 2014 and 2015, working with Hawkeye special teams.
Iowa has six players on its roster whose father played for the Hawkeyes: TE Drew Cook (Marv in 1985-88), DL A.J. Epenesa (Epenesa in 1997), WR Henry Marchese (John in 1985), DE Anthony Nelson and DE Nathan Nelson (Jeff in 1990-92), and QB Ryan Schmidt (Rick 1984-85).
Iowa has four sets of the brothers on the team: DL Jack Kallenberger and OL Mark Kallenberger, DL Anthony Nelson and DL Nathan Nelson, OL Landan Paulsen and OL Levi Paulsen, and TE Ben Subbert and LS Jackson Subbert.
Iowa has two players whose brothers played at Iowa: LB Nick Niemann (Ben in 2014-17) and DL Brady Reiff (Riley in 2008-11).
LS Austin Spiewak is the grandson of Gary Grouwinkel, who played for Iowa in the 1957 and 1959 Rose Bowl Games.
OL Trey Winters is the son of James Winters, a former All-Big Ten basketball player who led the Hawkeyes in scoring in 1994.
LB Dillon Doyle is the son of head strength and conditioning coach Chris Doyle.
Junior offensive linemen Landan and Levi Paulsen are the sixth set of twins to play football at the University of Iowa. The offensive linemen from Woodbury High School in Northwest Iowa join the company of Leo and Lloyd Jensvold (1929-30), Harold and Herbert Shoener (1946-47), Kent and Kevin Ellis (1977-80), Aaron and Evan Kooiker (1992), and Shane and Shaun Prater (2008).
The last set of brothers to start in the same game for the Hawkeyes was James and LeShun Daniels. James was Iowa’s starting center in the 2016 season opener against Miami (Ohio), and LeShun was Iowa’s starting running back.
The last set of twins to start for the Hawkeyes was SS Kent Ellis and CB Kevin Ellis in 1980.
IOWA PROGRAM NOTES
• The Hawkeyes have earned bowl eligibility in 16 of the last 17 seasons.
• Iowa is the only school to have two head football coaches since 1979.
• Iowa is one of 19 teams to have played in at least 15 bowl games since 2001.
• Iowa has appeared in 15 bowl games since 2001. Among Big Ten schools, only Ohio State and Wisconsin have appeared in more (16).
• Iowa played in the Big Ten title game for the first time in program history on Dec. 5, 2015. Iowa earned Big Ten Conference championships in 2002 and 2004 and placed second in 2009. Iowa (8-0, 2002; 8-0, 2015) is one of three Big Ten teams to post a perfect mark in conference play since 1998 (BCS era), joining Michigan State (1) and Ohio State (5).
• Iowa has ranked in the top 10 in the final Associated Press and CNN/USA Today coaches polls five times since 2002, including a ranking of seventh in both polls at the conclusion of the 2009 season. Iowa ranked eighth in 2002, 2003 and 2004. The Hawkeyes finished 2015 ranked ninth in the AP poll and 10th in the USA Today Coaches Poll. In the Big Ten, only Ohio State has more top 10 finishes since 2002.
• Since 1936 when the first AP poll was released, Iowa has appeared in the poll 313 times, the fifth highest total in the Big Ten (Ohio State, Michigan, Wisconsin, and MSU). Iowa has been the top-ranked team in the country 11 times.
• Iowa set a school record with 12 wins in 2015. The Hawkeyes won 11 games in 2002 (11-2), and 2009 (11-2). In 2009, Iowa started 9-0 and won 10 regular season games for just the fourth time in school history.
• Iowa won 10 or more games in three consecutive years (2002-04) for the first time in school history.
• Kirk Ferentz has been named Big Ten Coach of the Year four times (2002, 2004, 2009, 2015) and was named National Coach of the Year in 2002 and 2015. Only Michigan’s Bo Schembechler (6) has more conference coach of the year honors. Iowa’s Hayden Fry and Penn State’s Joe Paterno both won the award three times.
• Iowa has had nine individual national award winners under head coach Kirk Ferentz. They include Brad Banks (2002 Davey O’Brien, Top Quarterback; 2002 Associated Press National Player of the Year); Dallas Clark (2002 Mackey, Top Tight End); Nate Kaeding (2002 Groza, Top Kicker); Robert Gallery (2003 Outland, Top Lineman); Shonn Greene (2008 Doak Walker, Top Running Back); Brandon Scherff (2014 Outland, Top Lineman), Desmond King (2015 Jim Thorpe), Josey Jewell (2017 Lott IMPACT).
• Iowa’s offensive line earned the Joe Moore Award in 2016, an honor bestowed upon the top offensive line unit in the country.
• Iowa’s football record in the 2000 decade was 80-45 (.640), a record that ranks as the best decade in Iowa football history, based on total wins. Iowa posted a record of 77-40-4 (.652) during the 1980’s and the Hawkeyes were 62-53-2 (.538) in the 1990’s. Iowa is 57-38 (.600) since 2010.
• Part of the Hawkeyes’ long-term success is due to the stability in the program. Iowa has had two head coaches since 1979. Hayden Fry took over prior to the 1979 season and coached through the 1998 season, posting a record of 143-89-6. Current coach Kirk Ferentz replaced Fry and is entering his 20th season. Ferentz also served as Iowa’s offensive line coach from 1981-89 under Fry.
PAT GREEN TO PERFORM ‘WAVE ON WAVE’ IN KINNICK STADIUM
The three-time Grammy nominee Pat Green will perform during halftime of the Northern Iowa at Iowa football game in Kinnick Stadium on Sept. 15. Green joins the Hawkeye Marching Band and the Northern Iowa Panther Marching Band to perform “Wave on Wave,” the anthem of the Iowa Wave to the University of Iowa Stead Family Children’s Hospital. Green has sold more than two million albums and released a string of 15 hits on the Billboard Top Country Singles Chart.
The marching bands will have a traditional performance of one number before they join Green in “Wave on Wave.” Green will perform from the stands near the south end zone with 50 members of each band. The combined remaining Hawkeye and Panther band members will create images on the field for the children to view during the performance.
ALL ABOARD TO KINNICK STADIUM!
The Hawkeye Express, the passenger train that transports fans from Coralville to Kinnick Stadium, is in its 15th season in 2018.
Adults can ride the train for $15, round trip, while children (12-and-under) ride for free. Tickets can be purchased in advance at the UI Ticket Office or on game day (cash only on game day) at the Hawkeye Express depot located near the boarding ramp. The trip to Kinnick Stadium is approximately 10 minutes. Media credentials are accepted, as well.
Free parking is located in lots near the Comfort Suites and Coral Ridge Mall. Fans can begin boarding the train three hours prior to kickoff. Return trips begin at the start of the fourth period and run 90 minutes after the game.
The Hawkeye Express is owned by the Iowa Northern Railway Company and operates on the Iowa Interstate Railroad.
REINVENTING THE STADIUM WAVE
The University of Iowa football program received the prestigious 2017 Disney Sports Spirit Award after launching a heart-warming tradition at its home games last season that touched the lives of scores of young patients at the University’s Stead Family Children’s Hospital.
In a tradition that started at the 2017 season opener, fans inside Kinnick Stadium and patients and families inside the UI Stead Family Children’s Hospital exchange waves at the end of the first quarter of each home game.
The UI Stead Family Children’s Hospital opened in 2017. It is connected to the south end of the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics and overlooks Kinnick Stadium from the southeast grandstands. During Iowa football home games, patients and their families can watch the game from the top floor (Level 12), one of the highest vantage points in Iowa City.
FRYfest is in its 10th year of celebrating all that is Hawkeye. The event, named after legendary UI football coach Hayden Fry, kicks off the UI football season each year at Coralville’s Iowa River Landing. This year’s FRYfest is Aug. 31, and includes the World’s Largest Hawkeye Tradeshow, a Bags Tournament, Blood Drive, the Ultimate Hawkeyes Trivia Challenge, an outdoor concert with the Pork Tornadoes, and more.
The 2018 FRYfest is celebrating the 25th anniversary of the 1983 Iowa football coaching staff. Former Iowa head coach Hayden Fry, the namesake of the FRYfest event, is expected to attend Iowa’s opening game Sept. 1 at Kinnick Stadium.
For more information on FRYfest: A Celebration of All that is Hawkeye, please visit FRYfest.com.
HAWK TALK WITH KIRK FERENTZ
Head Coach Kirk Ferentz is featured on “Hawk Talk with Kirk Ferentz” each week during the regular season. The radio call-in show is hosted by Gary Dolphin, the play-by-play voice of the Iowa Hawkeyes. The show airs live each Wednesday at 6:30 p.m. from Carlos O’Kelly’s in Iowa City. The first show is Aug. 29. There is no show during the Hawkeyes’ by week (Wednesday, Sept. 26).
HALL OF FAME
The University of Iowa Athletics Department’s 30th Hall of Fame class — Kineke Alexander, Jared DeVries, Chris Hatcher, Sarah Lynch, Alexis Maday, Jeff McGinness, and Bob Sanders — will be inducted into the Iowa Athletics Hall of Fame on Friday, Aug. 31 — the evening prior to the season opener against Northern Illinois.
The UI Athletics Hall of Fame induction ceremony is Aug. 31 at 6:30 p.m. (CT) inside the Grand Coral Ballroom at the Coralville Marriott Hotel and Convention Center. A hors d’oeuvres and cocktail reception precedes the induction ceremony at 5:30 p.m. The induction ceremony and reception is open to the public. Tickets may be purchased for $20 online at hawkeyesports.com/HOFtickets. For more information please call the Iowa Varsity Club office at (319) 335-9438.
All Hawkeye athletes who have earned at least one varsity letter award at Iowa are eligible for the Iowa Athletics Hall of Fame. Athletes must have completed their eligibility 10 years, and coaches/administrators five years prior to their induction.
COACHES TO WEAR AFCA PATCH ON OPENING WEEKEND
With opening weekend in less than two weeks, more than 800 high school, junior college and four-year college football coaching staffs will wear American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) patches on their shirts to promote the association and bring awareness to its programs. AFCA patches will be worn during games from August 25 through September 3.
Founded in 1922, the AFCA currently has more than 11,000 members around the world ranging from the high school level to the professional ranks. According to its constitution, the AFCA was formed, in part, to “maintain the highest possible standards in football and in the coaching profession” and to “provide a forum for the discussion and study of all matters pertaining to football.”
Some of the early leaders of the AFCA were college football royalty, such as John Heisman and Amos Alonzo Stagg. Major Charles Daly, head coach at Army, organized the first meeting of college football coaches on December 27, 1921, which eventually led to the organization of the AFCA the following year. Daly served as the association’s first president. Virtually all of the great coaches in college football have actively participated in the AFCA. Past presidents include such respected coaches as Alabama’s Bear Bryant, Texas’ Darrell Royal, Yale’s Carmen Cozza, Grambling State’s Eddie Robinson and Michigan’s Bo Schembechler. The 2018 AFCA president is Bill Cronin, head coach at Georgetown (Ky.) College, who is the association’s first-ever president from an NAIA school.
The AFCA has numerous programs that honor coaches and players, or help promote the game and the coaching profession. The AFCA works with Amway and USA TODAY Sports to administer the Amway Coaches Poll, which has a panel of FBS-level coaches who vote on the Top 25 teams in FBS each week during the season. The AFCA’s first Top 25 poll was established in 1950, 15 years after the association started selecting a National Coach of the Year. The association also honors Regional Coaches of the Year and Assistant Coaches of the Year in FBS, FCS, Division II, Division III and the NAIA.
On the player side, the AFCA began selecting an All-America Team in 1945 and now has first and second teams for all five of the four-year collegiate divisions. The association also honors student-athletes for their community service with the Allstate AFCA Good Works Team®.
The AFCA will coordinate a multi-platform social media campaign throughout opening weekend using the hashtag #AFCAPatch. You can help the association by using the hashtag and tagging us (@WeAreAFCA) on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook. For more information on the AFCA and its promotional patch weekend, visit www.afca.com or follow AFCA on social media. You may also call the AFCA office at 254-754-9900.