AFC Spring Roundup

From the recently quiet long arm of the NFL's PR Department:

http://twitter.com/nflfootballinfo 

AFC SPRING ROUND-UP
 
BALTIMORE:  The Ravens are offering college scholarships to current high school seniors for the fall of 2010. Funded by the Ravens All Community Team Foundation, this scholarship program will enable local youth to continue their education on a collegiate level.  Based on financial need, academic achievement and service to local communities, the $5,000 annual scholarship is renewable, such that each Ravens scholar will have the opportunity to receive a total of $20,000 over the course of four years of college.  Final selections will be made by a committee of staff from the Baltimore Ravens and CollegeBound Foundation.  Grant announcements will be made this May.  Annually, the Ravens provide more than $500,000 in grant funding to local nonprofits, including close to $100,000 through the Plan in Motion program, which promotes physical fitness and nutrition education among youth.

BUFFALO:  MARY WILSON, wife of Bills owner RALPH WILSON, will host The WNY Girls in Sports Clinic, in partnership with the United Way, Buffalo Public Schools and Girl Scout Council of WNY.  The interactive sports clinic for female students will be held at the Buffalo Bills Field House.  Various stations such as tennis, golf, volleyball, soccer, double dutch, ice hockey, rowing and sportsmanship will be set up around the Field House for girls to learn more about the positive impact that sports can have on their lives.  These young girls will have the opportunity to participate in the different sports presented and learn more about sports and health related issues.  Mary pioneered The WNY Girls in Sports program in 2004, to empower, educate and motivate young girls through sports participation, learning life skills, sportsmanship and awareness of Title IX and its history.
 
CINCINNATI:  MARVIN LEWIS, the 2009 AP NFL Coach of the Year, will host his signature charitable event of the offseason on May 22.  The Marvin Lewis Golf Classic will benefit ongoing outreach programs primarily focused on educational initiatives.  A field of 244 golfers, including former and current Bengals, will compete in various contests such as Hole-in-One, Longest Drive and Closest-to-the-Pin……The Marvin Lewis USA Football Coaching Clinic will be held at Paul Brown Stadium on June 4-5, featuring members of the Bengals coaching staff as well as area high school and college coaches instructing 200 youth, junior and high school football coaches.  During this two-day program, coaches learn leadership skills, nutrition tips for players, proper fitness training, team development, strategy, drills, player communication, and community involvement…..On June 8-10, Lewis will conduct The Second Annual Old Spice Marvin Lewis Football Camp presented by CBTS and Fifth Third Bank at Paul Brown Stadium.  Lewis, members of the Bengals coaching staff, and volunteer coaches will be on hand to instruct more than 300 kids on the fundamentals of football.
 
CLEVELAND:  The Browns organization will team with the American Heart Association for the Healthy Family Training Camp on Tuesday, March 23 at the Browns Training Facility in Berea, Ohio.  The Healthy Family Training Camp is hosted by the Browns as part of their efforts to encourage kids and families to get 60 minutes of activity a day through the NFL’s "Play 60" campaign.  Over 300 families from the Greater Cleveland community were invited to learn how to make healthy life-style changes through increased physical activity and a heart-healthy diet.  Attendees will have the opportunity to learn and interact on the Browns’ indoor practice field in four themed areas:  The Schoolhouse, Playground, Healthy Home and Locker Room.  Additionally, participants will sample favorite snacks of Browns players.  Health screenings and healthcare professionals will be available on-site.  An inflatable playground and interactive activities will be available for the entire family.
 
DENVER:  The Broncos organization will partner with the American Cancer Society for the 2010 Denver Broncos Relay For Life at INVESCO Field at Mile High on April 30-May 1.  The Relay For Life event takes place overnight and encourages community members to honor cancer survivors of all ages.  Proceeds raised through the event help support the fight against cancer.  "The Denver Broncos are proud to work with the American Cancer Society on our inaugural season of Relay For Life at INVESCO Field at Mile High," says Broncos vice president of community development CINDY KELLOGG.  "Our community’s health remains at the forefront of our mission, and working with a leader in the health industry like the American Cancer Society provides a unique way in which to implement our mission.  We look forward to a wonderful event."
 
HOUSTON:  Texans owner BOB MCNAIR leads a group of eight to be inducted into the South Carolina Athletic Hall of Fame on March 24.  McNair graduated from the University of South Carolina with a Bachelor of Science degree in 1958.  In 1999, McNair received an honorary doctor of humane letters degree from the University of South Carolina……McNair and his wife, JANICE, will be honored at the DePelchin Children's Center spring luncheon on April 29.  The luncheon’s theme is Tackle Mental Health and will help raise money to provide diagnosis and treatment of behavioral health disorders in children……Head coach GARY KUBIAK is the honorary chair for the 6th Annual Impact a Hero 5K Run/Walk/Wheel in Sugar Land, Texas on June 5.  This kicks off a weekend of events to raise funds to provide emotional and financial support for severely wounded and disabled veterans and their families.
 
INDIANAPOLIS:  Head coach JIM CALDWELL will host the 2010 Colts Celebrity Showdown to raise money for the Indianapolis Chapter of the Carson Scholars Fund and the Jim and Cheryl Caldwell Foundation.  In 2009, Caldwell helped the event raise over $90,000 to help fund scholarships for Indiana students and provide educational software and interactive whiteboards to local community centers.  This year’s event is scheduled for Wednesday, June 9.  It includes live and silent auctions, a cocktail reception, buffet dinner, player autograph session and the "Celebrity Showdown" – a Family Feud-style game show that pits members of the Colts offense versus the defense.  The annual fundraiser was started in 2005 by former Colts head coach TONY DUNGY.  Through the inaugural event, Dungy helped raise more than $600,000 through the Celebrity Showdown for the Indianapolis Chapter of CSF, endowing five Indianapolis Public Schools and providing scholarships for 42 deserving Indiana youth. 
 
JACKSONVILLE:  A group of more than 40 leading North Florida-area merchants have teamed up to support Jaguars ticket sales and renewal efforts by offering fans who buy or renew season tickets a book of gift certificates called "Teal Deals" containing over $1,300 worth of savings.  The Teal Deals book – filled with money-saving gift certificates that can be redeemed at restaurants and businesses – will be mailed to anyone who buys or renews 2010 season tickets. Purchasers are encouraged to also support the grassroots effort of Team Teal by joining a team at www.myteamteal.com by May 31.  The program was created and implemented by JOE ADEEB, president of Bono's restaurant, along with BRIAN FLYNN of Mint Magazine.  "What Brian Flynn and Joe Adeeb and these businesses have put together is a terrific value-added program that is a great benefit for our season ticket holders," says Jaguars owner WAYNE WEAVER.  "I appreciate their support and so many members of the business community working together to offer generous gift certificates."
 
KANSAS CITY:  Spearheaded by owner CLARK HUNT, the Chiefs have continued to spread the "Play 60" message throughout the offseason by creating the Chiefs Sports Lab located inside the New Arrowhead Stadium.  The Chiefs Sports Lab is set to open later this year and will feature interactive computer activities for youth, while promoting the importance of being active in their daily lives, good nutrition, and healthy living.  "Obesity and, specifically, overweight children, has become an epidemic in this country," says Chiefs Executive VP/COO MARK DONOVAN.  "What we are trying to do with the Chiefs Sports Lab is combat that problem.  It ties into the Play 60 campaign, which is something that we actively support"……Chiefs head coach TODD HALEY, who is a ’91 graduate of North Florida, was recently a recipient of the school’s 2009 Distinguished Alumni Achievement Award in Jacksonville, Florida.  The Distinguished Alumni Award is the most prestigious honor a UNF graduate can receive from the University of North Florida Alumni Association.  "I am truly humbled to receive UNF’s Distinguished Alumni Achievement Award" says Haley.  "I hold my education from the University of North Florida in very high regard, and I would be proud if any or all of my children decided to follow in my footsteps someday."
 
MIAMI:  The Dolphins have teamed up with several companies to launch Cisco Telepresence Communications Centers in Little Haiti and Port-au-Prince.  The two Cisco Telepresence videoconference systems will be established enabling Haitian families to communicate between those based in Little Haiti in Miami and relatives in Port-au-Prince, Haiti……Miami recently named former Dolphin player and longtime executive NAT MOORE Vice President/Senior Advisor.  Moore will oversee the Dolphins alumni activities and will take on an expanded senior advisory role working closely with Dolphins CEO MIKE DEE on a variety of special projects.  "His commitment to this organization -- both on and off the field  -- dating back to 1974 coupled with his passion for the role that the Dolphins play in our community make him an invaluable contributor to the high goals that STEPHEN ROSS has set for all of us with this franchise," says Dee.
NEW ENGLAND:  The March 31 deadline is quickly approaching to apply for the 2010 New England Patriots "Write On Scholarship," which gives local students the opportunity to win up to $10,000 each in college scholarship funds. New England residents between the ages of 13 and 18 are eligible to enter the contest, which promotes creative writing and good citizenship through volunteerism.  Along with a creative essay about the most recent Patriots season, students will be asked to provide information about their own volunteer experiences and why giving back to the community is important for people of all ages.  This spring, 28 students will be awarded a total of $60,000 in scholarships, with one $10,000 grand prize, a $7,500 runner-up prize, a $5,000 honorable mention prize, and 25 $1,500 recognition prizes.  The New England Patriots Charitable Foundation has awarded nearly $400,000 in college scholarships over the past four years through the Write On Scholarship program. 
 
NEW YORK:  Jets owner WOODY JOHNSON will team up with Alliance for Lupus Research for the annual Northern New Jersey Walk With Us to Cure Lupus on June 5 at the Atlantic Health Jets Training Center.  Johnson has directed his involvement in lupus research after his daughter was diagnosed with the chronic inflammatory disease.  "His ties are strong and obviously his daughter has the condition of lupus and he started this organization and the players understand that," said Jets’ director of player development DAVE SZOTT.  Head coach REX RYAN and general manager MIKE TANNENBAUM will serve as co-chairmen of the event.  In 2009, 1,200 people participated in the 5K walk and the Jets aim to increase that number this year.
 
OAKLAND:  The Raiders have teamed up with the City of Oakland for the inaugural Oakland Running Festival set for March 27-28.  The Raiders will sponsor the first mile of the 26.2 mile marathon course and the Raiderettes will be in attendance to cheer on runners as they cross the finish line.  "The Raiders are pleased to work with the City of Oakland to support an event that highlights the city's parks and recreation facilities, helps sustain worthwhile community endeavors and bolster the local economy," said Oakland Raiders chief executive AMY TRASK.  Race officials anticipate an inaugural field of 7,500 runners.  The twilight 5k race will start at 6:30 p.m. on March 27th for a sunset run around Oakland’s famous Lake Merritt. The marathon and team relays will begin at 7:30 a.m. the following day, while the half marathon will begin at 9:00 a.m.
 
PITTSBURGH:  The 2010 Art Rooney Awards will take place April 15 at the Westin Convention Center Hotel in Pittsburgh.  The award dinner is a tradition that was started in 1974 by the late Steelers founder, president, chairman of the board ARTHUR J. ROONEY to honor outstanding citizens for their contributions to the city of Pittsburgh.  Over the years, award winners have included athletes and prominent civic, political, and religious leaders.  Steelers president ARTHUR J. ROONEY II has continued the tradition started by his grandfather.  President of PNC SY HOLZER, who has exemplified the qualities of leadership and community service which the Rooney award intends to honor, will receive the Art Rooney Award this year. 
 
SAN DIEGO:  Chargers head athletic trainer JAMES COLLINS and assistants DAMON MITCHELL and WILL ROGERS were honored as the 2009 NFL Athletic Training Staff of the Year by the Professional Athletic Trainers Society (PFATS).  Collins is in his 14th season with the Chargers and 11th as the team’s head athletic trainer. Collins and his staff oversee all medical treatment and rehabilitation for the Charger players.  "It’s a big honor for us to receive this award," says Collins. "It means that our peers feel as though we do a great job in representing the NFL, our players and our team by performing at a high level in athletic training and sports medicine."
 
TENNESSEE:  The Titans and USA Football recently hosted a state-wide forum at the Titans practice facility, where 35 executive directors/administrators of youth football leagues representing approximately 5,000 youth football players from the region attended.   The Titans/USA Football Youth Coaches Clinic will be held on May 15……The Titans will conduct their annual Titans Caravan beginning on Monday, April 12 and will make stops across Tennessee, Kentucky and Alabama over the course of 10 days.  Various Titans players, staff, cheerleaders, mascot and radio personalities will participate to thank fans for their continued support.  "Titans Caravan is a special way our organization personalizes our connection to fans across all of Tennessee and the Mid-South," says Titans Owner and Founder K.S. "BUD" ADAMS, JR.  "It offers players and staff the opportunity to meet people individually and demonstrate our appreciation face-to-face.  The Titans Caravan is a one-of-a-kind experience that puts fans in close contact with our players."     

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