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By: Marvin Chambers:| 4:0 Sports Media

Every year in January, New Haven, Connecticut becomes the college football mecca of the world as current All Americans, alumni, NFL players and distinguished guests gather to pay tribute to the Father of American Football. They enjoy a weekend filled with philanthropic work, recognition and celebration.

The Walter Camp Annual Awards weekend had a special feel in the air at the prestigious Yale Commons, the largest and most regal dining hall on Yale’s campus. The founding fathers of the Walter Camp Football Foundation discussed plans for their inaugural All-America awards dinner site be on the campus.

What better place to honor the man known as “The Father of American Football, who was born in Connecticut and raised in New Haven. Walter Camp’s legacy as a pioneering leader, whose innovations shaped and formulated the game of football, as we know it today began his career as a prominent Yale athlete and its first football coach. (1877-1882).

This weekend the WCCF celebrates its 50th anniversary as the organization remains stalwart in perpetuating the name of the man known as “ The Father of American Football” and continues the fine tradition of selecting the annual All-American team.

The 2016 WALTER CAMP FOOTBALL FOUNDATION MAJOR

AWARD WINNERS

Noel Thomas, Jr. (Connecticut Player Of The Year)- The Walter Camp 2016 Connecticut Player of the Year is presented to the top college football player who is resident and/ or played scholastically in the state.

Mike MacIntyre (Coach Of The Year)- Is the head coach of the University of Colorado Buffaloes, is the Walter Camp 2016 Coach of the Year, as selected by the nation’s 129 Football Subdivision head coaches and sports information directors.

Orlando Pace (Alumni Award)- The Walter Camp “Alumni of the Year” award is bestowed on a worthy individual who has distinguished himself in the pursuit of excellence as an athlete, in his personal career and in doing good works for others. He must be an individual who has exhibited dedication and good moral conduct in achieving Success.

Warrick Dunn (Man Of The Year)- The Walter Camp Man of the Year must been closely associated with football as either a player or coach or in a position attendant to the game.

He must have attained a measure of success and been a leader in his chosen profession, whatever it may be. He must have contributed to the public service for the benefit of his community, his country and his fellow man.

Mike Ditka (Distinguished American)- The Walter Camp Distinguished American award is presented each year to an individual who has utilized his or her talents to attain great success in business, private life or public service, and who may have accomplished that which no other has done. He or she may have a record of dedication to mankind that should not pass unrecognized and a life that has been dedicated to the preservation of the American ideal.

Saundra Adams (Walter Camp American Hero Award)- Saundra Adams’ life was forever changed in 1999 when her only child, Cherica, was murdered in a conspiracy mastermind by her boyfriend, ex-NFL player Rae Carruth. Cherica was 8 months pregnant with Rae’s son. Saundra gave up her career to become a single mother at age 42. She raised her beloved grandson from birth.

Lamar Jackson (Player Of The Year)- The Walter Camp Trophy is awarded to the outstanding player of the year who has exemplified the qualities of self-discipline, unselfish team play, desire to excel, mature judgment and respect for leadership. He must be a dedicated competitor who has made effective use of his athletic talent to enhance the great American game of college football.

As it was back then, Walter Camp Football Foundation membership continues today be an all-volunteer organization of more than 100, managed by area business professionals from all works of life, including doctors, lawyers, educators, accountants, legislators and industrialists, among others.

Robert Kauffman, Michael Madera, Mario Coppola, and Al Carbone made the 50th Annual Awards weekend one of the most prestigious college football awards ceremony In the nation.