2011 February

Jones County Junior College Leadership Visits Academy

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Representatives from Jones County Junior College (JCJC) and the National Center for Spectator Sports Safety and Security (NCS4) visit the United States Sports Academy

Representatives from Jones County Junior College (JCJC) and the National Center for Spectator Sports Safety and Security (NCS4) visited the United States Sports Academy on Friday, 18 February 2011, to discuss the ways and means by which the organizations might be able to work together.

From left: Mr. Jim Walley, the Vice President of External Affairs at JCJC; Dr. Thomas P. Rosandich, the President of the United States Sports Academy; Dr. Stacey Hall, the Associate Director of NCS4 and the Assistant Professor of Sport Management at the University of Southern Mississippi; Ms. Dolores Deasley, the Women’s Head Soccer Coach at JCJC; and Dr. Jesse Smith, the President of JCJC.

Academy VP Discusses Nationwide Physical Education Training Program with Malaysian Official

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Dr. T.J. Rosandich (left) and Shabery bin Cheek (right)

Academy Vice President and Chief Operating Officer Dr. T.J. Rosandich (left) recently met with Shabery bin Cheek (right), the Minister of Youth and Sport for Malaysia, to discuss developing a nationwide program to retrain all of Malaysia’s physical educators.

This was the second stop in the Vice President’s three-nation tour of Asia, after visiting Thailand last week. He is now in Singapore meeting with Chay Yee, the president of the International Sports Academy, site of the United States Sports Academy’s first diploma program.

Academy Vice President Visits Thailand Sports Authority Governor

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Kanokphand Chulakasem (left) and Dr. T.J. Rosandich

Kanokphand Chulakasem (left), the governor of the Sports Authority of Thailand (SAT), visits Academy Vice President and Chief Operating Officer Dr. T.J. Rosandich during his recent visit to Bangkok, Thailand.

Dr. T.J. Rosandich is in Thailand teaching a course in Olympism in conjunction with the SAT. The course is the first in a six-part series being hosted by the SAT for the Academy’s International Certification in Sports Management (ICSM) program.

Auburn-Oregon BCS Title Game Named Academy’s College Football Game of the Year

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Game of the Year

The football gods saved their best for last this past season, as Auburn’s 22-19 victory over Oregon in the Tostitos BCS National Championship Game was named College Football Game of the Year by the United States Sports Academy.

Noted Alabama artist Daniel A. Moore has been commissioned by the Academy to commemorate the historic achievement in oils on canvas. In addition to a $5,000 cash scholarship, the USSA Eagle Exemplar medallion and the framed Award Proclamation, the Academy will present the school with a framed canvas replica of Moore’s original oil painting. Moore was named as the Sport Artist of the Year by the American Sport Art Museum and Archives (ASAMA), a division of the Academy, in 2005.

The annual Award was initiated by the Academy in 2005 to pay tribute to a team whose efforts in a college football game exemplify the principles of high athletic endeavor, complete dedication to victory, and unified team effort. The College Football Game of the Year Award is a part of the Academy’s Awards of Sport series, which was established as “a tribute to the artist and the athlete.”

A game that was expected to be a high-scoring shootout became one with almost as many big plays and story lines as points, including:

  • Auburn wins its first national championship in 53 years.
  • The Tigers succeed their state rivals, Alabama, as national champions. Both Alabama schools won the national title and had a Heisman Trophy winner in the same season (and Alabama also won the Academy’ Game of the Year last season, with its 32-13 victory over Florida in the Southeastern Conference Championship Game).
  • The game was won on the final play, a field goal by senior Wes Byrum as time expired.
  • Heisman winner, junior quarterback and Academy Alabama Male Athlete of the Year winner Cameron Newton directed the winning drive in the final 2:33.
  • A freshman running back, Michael Dyer, rushed for 143 yards and got his team into range for the winning kick when he rolled over a defender, got up thinking the play was over and responded to cries from his sideline to keep running in a play that resulted in a 37-yard gain.
  • On the Oregon side, the Ducks trailed by eight points with five minutes left and Auburn had the ball, until Newton was hit from behind, having the ball jarred loose by an Oregon helmet.
  • The fumble set up a Duck touchdown, and Oregon tied the game with its second two-point conversion of the night. The first came on a fake extra point in the first half.
  • Down 11-7, Auburn tried to secure a lead by going for it on fourth and goal late in the first half, but the pass fell incomplete. The change of possessions left the Ducks with the ball on their own one-yard line, and the score was narrowed when Duck running back LaMichael James was nailed in the end zone for a safety.
College Football Game of the Year Sketch by Daniel Moore

College Football Game of the Year Sketch by Daniel Moore

A panel of experts helped the Academy decide the Game of the Year. Chairman was Hall of Fame coach Jack Lengyel, the former athletic director at the U.S. Naval Academy and coach at Marshall University.

A group of people with distinguished backgrounds in college football and the media worked with the Academy’s Awards of Sport on the College Football Game of the Year Committee, including: Hall of Fame coach Vince Dooley from the University of Georgia and Dr. Homer Rice, the former head coach at Rice University and longtime Georgia Tech athletic director.

This was the fifth Academy Game of the Year, the first being Rutgers’ emergence into college football prominence in 2006 with a 28-25 victory over Louisville.

In the second Game of the Year, Appalachian State became the first Division 1-FCS (formerly 1-AA) team to defeat a D1-FBS (formerly 1-A) team ranked in the top five, with a 34-32 victory over Michigan in Ann Arbor, Mich. the first week of the 2007 season.

In the third Game of the Year, a Texas Tech team coached by 2003 Academy Alumnus of the Year Mike Leach upset No. 1-ranked Texas 39-33 in 2008.

Founded in 1984, ASAMA is dedicated to the preservation of sport art, history, and literature. The ASAMA collection is composed of more than 1,500 works of sport art across a variety of media, including paintings, sculptures, assemblages, prints, and photographs.

The museum is free and open to the public from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Marine Corps League Forms in Daphne

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Cal Walters meets with local leadership on the campus of the United States Sports Academy to discuss the development of a new Detachemnt in Daphne.

Joining eleven other Detachments in the great state of Alabama, the United States Marine Corps League has opened a new Detachment in Daphne on the campus of the United States Sports Academy.

Cal Walters, Commandant of the Department of Alabama Marine Corps League, met with local leadership on the campus of the United States Sports Academy to discuss the development of a new Detachemnt in Daphne. During this meeting, Mr. John Walker of Spanish Fort agreed to serve as the acting Commandant and Dr. Thomas P. Rosandich, founding President of the United States Sports Academy, agreed to serve as the acting dignitary during the formation of the League. Dr. Rosandich and Mr. Walker both served as Officers in the Marine Corps.

One of the first acts of the new Daphne Marine Corps League will be to donate renowned artist Harry Weber’s Vietnam “A Warrior’s Sketchbook” art collection to the USS Alabama Battleship Memorial Park’s Vietnam Exhibit.

The Daphne Detachment will meet monthly on the campus of the Academy, which is conveniently located off of Highway 98. The first meeting will take place on Tuesday, 1 March 2011. All Marines and Navy Corpsmen who have served with Marines are invited to attend and encouraged to join.

Current Commandant of the Marine Corps, General James F. Amos, states, “A Marine is a Marine – there’s no such thing as a former Marine. You’re a Marine, just in a different uniform and you’re in a different phase of your life. But you’ll always be a Marine because you went to Parris Island, San Diego or the hills of Quantico. There’s no such thing as a former Marine.”

If you have questions about joining the Marine Corps League Detachment in Daphne, Alabama, please contact the Academy at 251-626-3303 and we will stand at the ready to assist you.

Ronald Reagan Centennial Stamp

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Former first Lady Nancy Reagan (left of the display) unveils a new postage stamp, designed by 1986 American Sport Artist and Archives (ASAMA) Sport Artist of the Year Bart Forbes (right of the display), to honor the late President Ronald Reagan's 100th birthday.

Former first Lady Nancy Reagan (left of the display) unveils a new postage stamp, designed by 1986 American Sport Artist and Archives (ASAMA) Sport Artist of the Year Bart Forbes (right of the display), to honor the late President Ronald Reagan’s 100th birthday. The 40th President of the United States was a radio announcer for University of Iowa football and the Chicago Cubs early in his professional life, and the United States Sports Academy annually presents a Ronald Reagan Media Award to outstanding contributors to sports journalism.

Award-winning Nigerian Artist Visits Academy

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Ibiyinka Olufemi Alao of Nigeria displayed the original of his work: "Grace: That Even The World Can Pass Through It."

Ibiyinka Olufemi Alao of Nigeria, a winner of the United Nations International Art Competition, recently visited the United States Sports Academy’s American Sport Art Museum and Archives (ASAMA) during a tour of the United States.

He was guest of Academy Art Committee Chairperson Nancy Raia. During the visit, he displayed the original of his work: “Grace: That Even The World Can Pass Through It.”

“The battle against poverty is yet to be recorded accurately in our history books, yet it is memorable enough for those who took part in it,” Alao states. “These people now know that the greatest equipment that guarantees victory is love.

“Nothing defines true love as much as Grace. Grace makes beauty out of ugly things. Because of Grace, what causes pain no longer hurts.”

His winning entry, in a contest sponsored by the United Nations Population Fund in 2001, was “Girls and a Greener Environment,” which chronicled the life of a girl from infancy to adulthood and the values she acquires along the paths of life.

Rezner Pottery Brings History, World Culture to Academy and its Community

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"Babe Ruth" Face Jug

"Babe Ruth" Face Jug

Ten miles from the United States Sports Academy’s Daphne campus is a place where history and world culture combine in the works of local ceramic Potter John Rezner.

Rezner, the American Sport Art Museum and Archives (ASAMA) 2011 Sport Artist of the Year, is known for a style of pottery that has roots in the early 19th century and a firing technique that can be traced back to ancient Asia.

The Fairhope, Ala.-based artist makes pottery that is seen all over the world, from clay he digs from his own land. Baldwin County clay is highly prized for its aesthetic qualities. The public can even witness him firing his clay, in a kiln that can fire up to 500 pots at one time, on his property at 21270 Hwy 181 in Fairhope.

As a sport artist, Rezner specializes in face jug depictions of baseball legends, such as Babe Ruth, whose career home-run and single-season home-run records each stood for more than three decades; Hank Aaron, a native of nearby Mobile, Ala. who broke Ruth’s career home-run record in 1974; and Ted Williams, the first player ever to bat over .400 for a single season in the major leagues whose Hall of Fame career was twice interrupted by service as a Marine pilot in World War II and Korea. All three jugs are on display at the Academy.

A member of the Academy’s Art Committee, Rezner created a face jug – a jug shaped with an individual’s facial features – of the Abbot of the Shaolin Temple, leader of millions of Shaolin Buddhists.

“I presented (the jug) as a symbol of our two cultures merging,” Rezner said.

The jug is now in China as part of the Shaolin Temple’s museum collection. The Abbot received the gift when he visited the Academy’s Daphne campus in 2006 upon receiving an honorary doctorate.

Face Jugs are a unique pottery item found in the South, according to Karl Kuehn, a collector in Huntington Beach, Calif.  He said the origin of face jugs is not know for certain, but has its roots in the African American slave community. Some of the earliest examples are credited to “Dave the Slave,” who produced pottery from the 1820’s to the 1860’s in the Edgefield, S.C. area. Folk history holds that when someone in the slave community died, the jugs were modeled with devil faces and placed on the grave for a year. If the jug broke it was thought to be a sign that the soul of the deceased was wrestling with the devil. A second theory is that the scary faces were applied to jugs containing moonshine to keep children away from the contents.

Face jugs are still a widely collected form of pottery and are growing in popularity due to influential works by the legendary Lanier Meaders (White County, Ga. 1917 – 1998) who was descended from a family of potters. Another such potter, Steve Abee of Lenoir, N.C. belongs to the Catawba Valley, N.C. pottery tradition.

Rezner’s pottery is the combination of three of his greatest passions: his family, the Eastern Shore of Mobile Bay and traditional pottery techniques. His work is fired using an anagama kiln, which is an ancient Asian cave-like pottery kiln that uses the flame from burning wood as an artistic element. The method originated in China but was brought to Japan via Korea in the fifth century. For generations, the anagama techniques have been adapted into Southern pottery.

Rezner’s jugs can be purchased at the Academy’s Daphne campus, at One Academy Drive, between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Founded in 1984, ASAMA, a division of the United States Sports Academy, is dedicated to the preservation of sports art, history, and literature. The ASAMA collection is composed of more than 1,500 works of sport art across a variety of media, including paintings, sculptures, assemblages, prints, and photographs.

The museum is free and open to the public from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Academy, Chinese, Working on Multi-Billion Dollar "Sport Cities"

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Guo signing

The United States Sports Academy will be providing Academic services to three multi-billion dollar projects, “Sport Cities” in China that will be built around a major golf course and designed to be model towns for promoting a “healthy and happy” lifestyle in the world’s most populous nation.

Academy President Dr. Thomas P. Rosandich plans to attend the ground-breaking for the first city, named Samaranch Sports Town, on 21 April. The town is named after the late former International Olympic Committee (IOC) President Juan Antonio Samaranch, an honorary doctorate recipient at the Academy who is famous for the IOC historic financial turnaround that has made the Olympics the billion-dollar event that it is today. Samaranch Sports Town will be developed on 5,100 acres of property in the Fujian province.

WorldTeam is hoping that the Samaranch-era Olympic prosperity will result from this project. Samaranch Sports Town will be in the Quangang District of Quanzhou City, which is located in the center part of the west coast of the Taiwan Strait. Quanzhou is the economic center in the Fujian Province, and has the No. 1 gross domestic product rating in the province.

The United States Sports Academy and WorldTeam, among the largest privately-owned sport services companies in the People’s Republic of China, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on 7 January, establishing the framework for the development of the Sino-American Golf Academy (SAGA) in those cities. Dr. Rosandich signed the MOU with WorldTeam Preisdient Guo “Jack” Jie, who received an honorary doctorate at the Academy in this year.

The Academy will be involved in the design and planning for all three of the golf schools. It is anticipated that the second and third of the sports cities will be developed in rapid succession following the launch of the first facility.

However, the golf education program will not have to wait for the completion of the campus in Fujian. The Academy and WorldTeam will develop a graduate-level certificate program in Golf Management in cooperation with the Hunan International Economics University located in Changshan, Hunan Province. The Hunan International Economics University is among the largest private universities in China and has already developed a Bachelor’s Degree in Golf Education.

As envisioned, the graduate certificate program would offer advanced training in Golf Course Management for senior golf club managers with an emphasis on western management skills. The recent approval of golf being added to the Olympic Games, combined with the explosive growth of the golf industry in China, has created a need for trained golf club professionals that is not currently being met by the educational institutions in that country. The first students in the Golf Management certificate program will be admitted to study in the fall semester.

People, Places and Programs

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Representatives of the United States Sports Academy continue to travel all over the world to teach sports education programs. For nearly four decades, the Academy has provided programs in sport education to students throughout the nation and to 60 countries across the globe.

Academy Vice-President and Chief Operating Officer Dr. T.J. Rosandich is in Thailand teaching a course in Olympism, in conjunction with the Sports Authority of Thailand (SAT). The course is the first in a six-part series to be hosted by the SAT for the Academy’s International Certification in Sports Management (ICSM) program. The Academy has a long-standing relationship with the SAT, sending instructors to Thailand to teach certification courses in the sports management and sports coaching programs. The SAT is Thailand’s primary sport organization and plays a vital role in the development of sport.

After completing the program, T.J. Rosandich will travel to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia to present a program to the Minister of Education to retrain all of the nation’s physical educators. After Thailand, he will go to Singapore to present the Academy’s Distinguished Service Award to Ng Ser Miang, Vice President of the International Olympic Committee and President of the first Youth Olympic Games. While in Singapore, he will also meet with Chay Yee, president of the International Sports Academy, site of the United States Sports Academy’s first diploma program.

Academy Dean of Student Services Dr. Craig Bogar and former Dean of Academic Affairs Dr. Richard Bell recently taught continuing education courses in sports marketing and sport finance at the National Senior Games Association (NSGA) annual meeting and conference in Las Vegas, Nev.  The Academy is developing a program to become the academic arm to provide adult education to the NSGA and its 300,000-plus members, age 50 to over 100.

Dr. Pete Mathiesen recently returned from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, where he taught sports psychology in cooperation with the country’s National Institute of Sport. A successful college basketball coach who also coached professional basketball in Australia, Dr. Mathiesen is a longtime member of the Academy’s national faculty.

Academy graduate Mike Vollmar was recently named assistant athletic director for football at the University of Michigan. The 1989 master’s degree recipient and 2010 Alumnus of the Year has been serving the same post at the University of Alabama.

Academy doctoral graduate Dr. Maria Elles Scott recently went to the Kingdom of Bahrain to teach sports public relations, in conjunction with Bahrain’s General Organization of Youth and Sports (GOYS), the final course in the ICSM program. The Academy’s nearly 40-year relationship with GOYS has played a vital role in the development of sports in the Kingdom.

Dr. Scott has previously served as associate director of communications for the South Florida Super Bowl XLI Host Committee and currently teaches public relations at the University of Miami (Fla.).

Snowboard Champ Shaun White, Volleyball Star Blair Brown are Academy’s Athletes of the Month

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Shaun White

Shaun White

Snowboarder Shaun White and the nation’s top collegiate women’s volleyball player, Blair Brown, were named Male and Female Athletes of the Month for January by the United States Sports Academy.

The public is invited to participate in the worldwide Athlete of the Month nominating and balloting processes. Visit the Academy website and submit your vote, and return to the website the first week of each month to vote on the Athlete of the Month. Winners will be announced on the Academy’s website and in the online edition of the Academy Update.

White won his fourth career halfpipe and superpipe championships at the Winter X Games in Aspen, Colorado. The two-time Olympic champion raised his career X Games gold medal total to 13.

Blair Brown

Blair Brown

Brown, a senior at Penn State won the Honda Award for top college women’s athlete in her sport. Brown led the Nittany Lions to their fourth consecutive national title, scoring a match-high 18 kills in the finals against California.

Australian Open men’s tennis champion Novak Djorkovic of Serbia finished second to White on the male ballot. The world’s No. 3 player won his second career title in Melbourne by overhelming Brittan’s Andy Murray 6-4, 6-2, 6-3, in the finals. It was also the second career Grand Slam tournament title for the 2008 and 2011 Australian champion.

World sprint speedskating champion Christine Nesbitt of Canada finished second on the female ballot. The World Cup and 2010 Olympic champion won both 1,000- meter races and was sixth and a surprising third in 500 meter races to claim the sprint title that is calculated on total time from the four races at the World Sprint Speed Skating Championships in Heerenveen, Netherlands.

Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers finished third for Male Athlete of the Month after he led the first No. 6 seed to win an NFC championship. Rodgers led the postseason in total passing yards (790), completing 66 of 93 pass attempts for six touchdowns and two interceptions in three Packer road victories.

Australian Open women’s tennis champion Kim Clijsters finished third on the women’s ballot, after she won her first title in Melbourne by defeating China’s Li Na, 3-6, 6-3, 6-3 in the finals. The victory gave the 27-year-old Belgian her fourth major as she became the No. 1-ranked women’s tennis player in the world.

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