Vol. 56, No. 1 November 2018 .pdf version
David Teel: Seating is our greatest issue
Joe Mitch: Dunphy epitomizes Dean Smith ideals
USBWA mourns passing of O'Connell, Guback
King, Theisen win Guback scholarships
Quinn a big winner in writing contest
Kansas, Notre Dame are preseason favorites

Joe Mitch

Temple's Dunphy epitomizes ideals of Dean Smith Award

USBWA Executive Director

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One of the real opportunities for USBWA members each year is to witness the honoring of individuals for their service to the USBWA and to college basketball.

Many of the awards are presented at the men's and women's Final Four.

They are given not just to members but also to others in college basketball such as athletics directors, coaches, sports information directors and players.

Counting the hardware for player of the year, coach of the year and freshman of the year for men and women, the USBWA hands out 13 awards each year. Since I've been involved in the organization for the last 39 years, I've seen how much these awards mean to people.

There's usually not a dry eye in the house during the USBWA's honors functions at either Final Four.

The USBWA's newest award is named in honor of the late legendary North Carolina coach Dean Smith.

Past president and Hall of Fame member John Feinstein created the award honoring Smith. It is given annually to an individual in college basketball who embodies the spirit and values of Smith. Coaches are recognized for their principles of honesty and integrity, for treating all people with courtesy and respect, for accomplishments off the court and for the impact they have made on their community and the lives of their players.

This year's recipient of the Dean Smith Award is Temple coach Fran Dunphy, who is recognized as much for his charity work and community service off the court as he is for his success on the court.

"To receive an award named in honor of Dean Smith is truly humbling," Dunphy said. "No one had more integrity or did more to promote what is good in college basketball. To be recognized like this is a tremendous honor."

Dunphy entered his 30th season as a head coach this year, and 13th at Temple, compiling 557 career victories. He has guided his teams at Penn and Temple to 17 20- win seasons, 16 NCAA tournament appearances and 14 conference championships.

But it his tireless devotion to the national Coaches vs. Cancer charity over the past 23 years that has earned him as much respect nationally as the number of championships and games he's won in basketball.

"Fran's record as a coach speaks for itself, but it doesn't begin to make clear the lives he's touched and the remarkable work he's done for charity," Feinstein said. "I know Coach Smith would applaud no, cheer the USBWA for giving the award named for him to Fran Dunphy."

Dunphy currently is co-chair of the Philly 6 Coaches vs. Cancer chapter and a member of the national council. "Coach Dunphy has always given back," said past president and Hall of Famer Dick "Hoops" Weiss. "He epitomizes the highest character, teaching skills and community values that Dean Smith would admire."

Dunphy is the fourth person to receive the Dean Smith Award. Previous winners include retired Georgetown coach John Thompson in 2015, Michigan State's Tom Izzo in 2016 and retired Dayton coach Don Donoher last year.

Lodge Notes: Busy offseason for USBWA members

A large number of USBWA members or recent members left their previous jobs since last May:

Hall of Famer and past USBWA president Kirk Wessler left the Peoria (Ill.) Journal after 31 years.

Hall of Famer and past USBWA president Steve Carp went from the Las Vegas Review Journal, where he had worked for 19 years and was a former UNLV beat writer, to Gaming Today.

The Athletic hired several writers as college beat writers: Tyson Alger (Oregon), Eamonn Brennan (Georgetown, Virginia, national), Scott Dochterman (Iowa), Dustin Dopriak (Indiana, Purdue, Butler), Seth Emerson (Georgia), Jeff Greer (Louisville), Doug Haller (Arizona State, Arizona), Bill Landis (Ohio State), John Martin and Jason Smith (Memphis), C.J. Moore (Kansas, Kansas State, Missouri), Shannon Russell (Xavier), Jesse Temple (Wisconsin) and Kyle Tucker (Kentucky).

Former USBWA board member Lee Barfknecht left the Omaha World Herald after 39 years at the paper.

Jeff Goodman moved from ESPN to The Stadium.

Kevin Armstrong was among several employees laid off in July by the New York Daily News.

Kevin Brockway moved from beat writer of the Florida Gators' basketball program at the Gainesville (Fla.) Sun, a post he held since 2003, to the Sun's Florida education beat.

Ron Higgins went from the New Orleans Times- Picayune to the Clarion (Miss.) Ledger, where he will be the sports editor and columnist.

Beats were switched at the Raleigh News & Observer: Steve Wiseman (from NC State to Duke), Joe Giglio (North Carolina to NC State) and Jonathan Alexander (Duke to North Carolina). Wiseman and Giglio returned to their previous beats.

In other news: USBWA women's rep Mel Greenberg, who spent a 40-year career at the Philadelphia Inquirer, joins ESPN's Claire Smith as legacy of excellence honorees in the 15-member Philadelphia Sports Hall of Fame Class during a Nov. 1 induction. Allen Iverson and Muffet McGraw are also among the honorees.

Former Dayton coach Don Donoher, honored with the USBWA's Dean E. Smith Award in 2017, donated $2,000 to the Dean Smith Opening Doors Fund, which provides educational opportunities to students from lower-income families.

Nominations being taken for USBWA awards

Nominations are now being accepted for the following USBWA awards to be presented next April.

HALL OF FAME: Established in 1988, the USBWA honors past and current members for their contributions to the organization and for their achievements in sports journalism. To be eligible, an individual must have a minimum of 20 years experience as a sports writer or college athletics administrator dealing with basketball. Send nominations to USBWA Executive Director Joe Mitch at mitch@usbwa.com.

KATHA QUINN AND MARY JO HAVERBECK: Both awards recognize individuals in men's and women's basketball for their service to the media and for the inspiration they provide to those in the sports journalism profession. The awards are presented in honor of two former sports information directors who have passed away – Quinn (St. John's) and Haverbeck (Penn State). Send nominations for the Quinn Award in men's basketball to past president Malcolm Moran at moranma@indiana.edu and Mike Waters, USBWA second vice president, at mwaters@syracuse.com, and to Mel Greenberg at poll@att.net for the Haverbeck Award in women's basketball.

MOST COURAGEOUS: The USBWA honors a player, coach, official or administrator who demonstrates extraordinary courage while facing adversity in life. First presented in 1978, it is the USBWA's oldest award. Send men's nominations to Shannon Ryan, USBWA third vice president, at sryan@chicagotribune.com, and women's nominations to Greenberg.

RISING STAR: The USBWA honors a member who is under 30 and shows outstanding promise as a journalist covering college basketball. Send nominations to past president John Akers at johna19081@gmail.com.

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