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Pitching Ace Halladay and Triathlete Swallow Earn October Athlete of the Month Honors

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Roy Halladay

Roy Halladay

An historic baseball pitching performance, and Jodie Swallow’s first World Cup Triathlon victory, earned Roy Halladay and the British triathlete Male and Female Athlete of the Month honors for October by the United States Sports Academy.

The Philadelphia pitcher Halladay threw the second no-hitter in postseason history when the Phillies defeated the Cincinnati Reds in game one of the National League Divisional Series. In the regular season, Halladay tied for the Major League lead in wins with 21 (first in the National League) and threw 219 strikeouts (second in the National League).

Swallow ended the World Cup season with a dominating performance to win the Tongyeong ITU Triathlon World Cup. Using a solo breakaway early on in the bike race in South Korea, she held her lead right through to the finish to win her first-ever career World Cup title.

Jodie Swallow

Jodie Swallow

Kenyan distance runners finished second in both ballots. Wilson Kipsang shattered the Frankfurt Marathon course record with the eighth-fastest marathon run ever, 2:04:57, the third fastest time in the world this year. On the female side, Nancy Langat breezed to the gold medal in the women’s 1,500-meter race at the Commonwealth Games in New Delhi, India, in a new Games record time of 4:05.26.

The Artistic Gymnastics World Championships provided the third place finishers on both the male and female ballots. Kohei Uchimura of Japan placed third on the male side after he overcame searing shoulder pain to retain his all-around title at the Artistic Gymnastics World Championships in Rotterdam, Netherlands. Uchimura scored 92.331 points, 2.283 more than runner-up Philipp Boy of Germany. On the female side, 16-year-old Alya Mustafina from Russia won the all-around gold medal in the Artistic Gymnastics World Championships, along with two silver medals, leading Russia to its first team gold medal. In the team competition, she had the highest individual scores in the balance beam and vault.

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.

Rick Rush Donates "Fighting Monks" Painting to Academy

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Photographed (from left to right): Dr. Thomas P. Rosandich, Academy President; Robert Zimlich, Academy Curator; and Don Rush

From left: Dr. Thomas P. Rosandich, Academy President; Robert Zimlich, Academy Curator; and Don Rush.

Don Rush, the President of Jireh Publishing and brother of the 2011 Sport Artist of the Year, Painter, Rick Rush, recently visited the Academy’s campus in Daphne, Ala., to deliver an original painting donated by Rush.

The painting is one of 12 being donated to the American Sport Art Museum and Archives, a division of the United States Sports Academy, depicting “Fighting Monks” performing Shaolin Kung Fu. The painting were based on drawings penciled by Rush in November 2006 when His Excellency Abbot Shi Yongxin, the spiritual leader of hundreds of millions of Chan Buddhists and an advocate of the modern revival of Shaolin Kung Fu, was presented with an Honorary Doctorate at the Academy.

Rick Rush sketches while watching a Chan Monk perform Shaolin Kung Fu

Rick Rush sketches while watching a Chan Monk perform Shaolin Kung Fu.

To meet the needs and interests of today’s students in globally-relevant sports subjects, the Academy is launching a series of courses on Shaolin Kung Fu, which will be available to students in 2011. The first courses are on the History and Philosophy of Shaolin Kung Fu, as well as the Theory of Shaolin Kung Fu Practices.

One of Rush’s 12 paintings will be selected to be featured on the cover of the textbook being developed by the Academy for the new international program. The U.S. Grandmaster of Shaolin, Steve DeMasco of New Hampshire, provided the Academy with English translations of rare, formerly secret, ancient, Shaolin manuscripts, which are being used as the basis for the textbook.

Academy National Faculty Member Peter Chen Honored in Taiwan

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Dr. Peter Chen, a member of the United States Sports Academy’s National Faculty, received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Ministry of Education in Taiwan.

Dr. Chen is the Vice President for Oceania of the International Council for Health, Physical Education, Recreation, Sport and Dance and also Emeritus Principal Lecturer at the Dunedin College of Education, now merged with the University of Otago, New Zealand. He was also the gymnastics coach for Taiwan at the 1964 and 1968 Olympic Games. He just returned to New Zealand after a stint as visiting professor at the School of Health, Physical Education and Leisure Services, University of Northern Iowa.

His teaching experience reflects 27 years of service in the East in addition to 27 years in the West, teaching in the areas of leadership, coaching, pedagogy, and philosophical perspectives between East and West.

Academy Honors Veterans with "A Warrior's Sketchbook" Exhibit

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Harry Weber, the 2011 American Sport Art Museum and Archives’ (ASAMA) Sport Artist of the Year, Sculptor, will honor veterans who served their country with a special art exhibition on the United States Sports Academy’s campus at 5 p.m. on Wednesday, 10 November.

The Academy will honor the 235th birthday of the U.S. Marine Corps, while kicking off its annual campaign as a major drop-off point for Toys for Tots, with this exhibition. The Marines will recognize the Academy as one of the largest Toys for Tots collection sites in the region.

Weber will display a series of sketches depicting scenes from World War II, The Korean War, Desert Storm, the Iraq War, and the War in Afghanistan in an exhibit entitled “A Warrior’s Sketchbook.”

He also presented the Academy with a bronze statue of a soldier holding up an American flag, entitled “Wounded Warrior.” This sculpture is being donated in recognition of the Academy’s dedication to educating the nation’s wounded warriors.

Weber is donating the sketches featured in the art exhibit to ASAMA, and they will be sold with the proceeds going to the Academy’s Wounded Warrior scholarship program, which provides scholarships for those injured in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

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.

Sports Illustrated Hockey Painting Donated to ASAMA

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“NHL,” a painting Sports Illustrated commissioned the late Edward Kasper to create in 1974, has been donated to the American Sport Art Museum and Archives (ASAMA).

The painting, which depicts an ice hockey referee dropping a puck for a face-off, is being donated by Scott Klion of New York, who purchased the piece in 1978.

Kasper was a native of Connecticut, who went to the Yale University School of Fine Arts. He was known mostly for sport art, working free-lance for Sports Illustrated in the 1960’s, 70’s, and 80’s. He exhibited at Dartmouth College, Spectrum Fine Arts in New York City, and many other galleries throughout New England. He also did illustrations for Columbia Records, Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar, and a number of books. For the last 15 years of his life, he specialized in portraits. He lived most of his life in Wilton, Connecticut, and died in 1997.

“My father developed tuberculosis of the hip at age five, well before there was any effective treatment for TB,” Kasper’s son, Dr. Edward Kasper, said. “He spent from age five until high school in a TB sanitarium for children with bone TB – very common in those days.”

“Because he had to stay off his feet, he learned to paint. He left the sanitarium to go to Milford High School. The art teacher recognized his talent and asked him to paint a mural on a wall in the high school. He painted a history of mathematics with about 15 life-sized figures of famous mathematicians. The art teacher notified the Dean of the Yale art school who, upon seeing the mural, offered him a full scholarship.”

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.

Iowa Spanks Spartans in College Football Game of the Week

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Iowa jumped to a 30-0 halftime lead and held on to crush undefeated No. 5 Michigan State 37-6 in the United States Sports Academy’s College Football Game of the Week.

The Hawkeyes threw the Big Ten Conference race into a four-team title chase by jumping off to a 10-0 first-quarter lead before the defense helped begin the rout with a 66-yard interception return for a touchdown. Safety Tyler Sash picked off the pass and pitched the ball to Micah Hyde, who then darted in for the score.

The College Football Game of the Week, voted upon by a national panel of experts, is nominated for the College Football Game of the Year at the end of the regular season.

Daniel Moore, the American Sports Art Museum and Archives (ASAMA) 2005 Sport Artist of the Year, is commissioned by the Academy each year to create a painting honoring the selected College Football Game of the Year. The Academy donates the painting to the winning university, along with $5,000 for its general scholarship fund.

Missouri’s Upset of No. 1 Oklahoma is College Football Game of the Week

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Missouri’s defense not only slowed down Oklahoma in the first half, but stopped them completely in the second during the United States Sports Academy’s College Football Game of the Week.

The Tigers stopped the BCS No. 1 team from scoring in three trips to the red zone (inside the opposing 20-yard line), then held Oklahoma to 101 yards in the second half of a 36-27 victory, their first over the Sooners since 1998. Missouri forced three turnovers, which was a season high for the Sooners.

Meanwhile, the Missouri offense came to life with the help of Jerrell Jackson’s 139 yards on nine catches and a near-perfect fourth quarter for quarterback Blaine Gabbert (8-for-9, 95 yards). The Tigers, trailing by one after three quarters, bounced back with 16 straight points.

The College Football Game of the Week, voted upon by a national panel of experts, is nominated for the College Football Game of the Year at the end of the regular season.

Daniel Moore, the American Sports Art Museum and Archives (ASAMA) 2005 Sport Artist of the Year, is commissioned by the Academy each year to create a painting honoring the selected College Football Game of the Year. The Academy donates the painting to the winning university, along with $5,000 for its general scholarship fund.

Sport Artist of the Year Award Presented to Missouri Sculptor

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Harry Weber (left) receives the 2011 Sport Artist of the Year, Sculptor, Award from Trustee Jack Scharr

Harry Weber (left) receives the 2011 Sport Artist of the Year, Sculptor, Award from Trustee Jack Scharr

Harry Weber was presented with the 2011 American Sport Art Museum and Archives (ASAMA) Sport Artist of the Year, Sculptor, Award by United States Sports Academy Trustee Jack Scharr at the Foundry Art Centre in St. Charles, Mo. on Friday, 22 October.

Weber, a man who has had a busy decade decorating the country with bronze statues, was one of the featured guests at a gala celebrating the anniversary of the art centre, located in the St. Louis suburbs. The presenter, Scharr, is the president of Fine Art Ltd. and the Academy Trustees’ Chairman of ASAMA.

The 21st century has been a busy time for Weber. Thirty-six out of 44 of his most noted works have been displayed at major venues over the last decade. This includes 10 statues displayed at the St. Louis Cardinals’ newest version of the Busch Stadium. The subject of one of those statues, former Cardinal player Ozzie Smith, was also a featured guest at the gala.

From left: Gary Shaw, President of the Foundry Arts Center; Greg Marasec, President of the St. Louis Sports Hall of Fame; Ozzie Smith, Hall of Fame Inductee and Former St. Louis Cardinals Major League Baseball Player; Harry Weber, 2011 Sport Artist of the Year, Sculptor; and Jack Scharr, Board of Trustees’ Chairman to ASAMA.

From left: Gary Shaw, President of the Foundry Arts Center; Greg Marasec, President of the St. Louis Sports Hall of Fame; Ozzie Smith, Hall of Fame Inductee and Former St. Louis Cardinals Major League Baseball Player; Harry Weber, 2011 Sport Artist of the Year, Sculptor; and Jack Scharr, Board of Trustees’ Chairman to ASAMA.

Weber’s sculptures are in a permanent collection at the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, N.Y. and are featured at the Museum of Fine Arts in Newport, R.I. Weber has won major awards at national juried competitions, and his bronze sculptures are in many private collections throughout the world.

The Sport Artist of the Year Award is presented annually to an individual who captures the spirit and life of sport so that future generations can relive the drama of today’s competition. The recipient may use a variety of art media to depict the breadth and scope of both the agony and the ecstasy of sport.

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.

Academy Celebrates Toys for Tots Kickoff, Marine Birthday with Art Exhibit

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The United States Sports Academy will honor the 235th birthday of the U.S. Marine Corps while kicking off its annual campaign as a major drop-off point for Toys for Tots with an art exhibition and reception at 4 p.m. on Wednesday, 10 November.

The Marines will recognize the Academy as one of the largest Toys for Tots collection sites in the region. Meanwhile, 2011 American Sport Art Museum and Archives (ASAMA) Sport Artist of the Year, Sculptor Harry Weber will recognize servicemen’s contribution to freedom with a series of sketches titled “A Warriors Sketchbook.” He will also present the Academy with a bronze statue of a wounded Vietnam soldier holding up an American flag, titled “Wounded Warrior.”

The Academy, which has been supporting Toys for Tots for nearly two decades, will charge one new, unwrapped toy as admission. The event will take place in the main gallery of ASAMA, which is part of the Academy campus. The toys will be presented to Marines from the Third Force Recon/Fourth Marine Division of Mobile. These marines have rotated in and out of Iraq and Afghanistan.

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.

Denver Broncos' Tebow Youngest to Win Academy’s Humanitarian Award

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Tim Tebow

Denver Broncos’ rookie quarterback Tim Tebow was presented with the Academy’s 2009 Jackie Robinson Humanitarian Award on Tuesday, 12 October, in Denver by Academy Trustee Emerita Dr. Evie Dennis.

Tebow is the youngest winner in the history of the Jackie Robinson Humanitarian Award. Prior to being drafted in the first round by the Broncos, he started for three years for the University of Florida Gators, winning the Heisman Trophy in 2007 and national championship in 2008. His on- and off-the-field actions as a college player received praise from coaches all over the nation.

“Football. Athleticism. Leadership. Charity work. His faith. You name it. I’ve never seen anybody who had all that in one package,” said former Georgia head football coach and Athletic Director Vince Dooley.

Alabama coach Nick Saban, whose team ended the Gators’ 22-game winning streak and their reign as national champions during the 2009 Southeastern Conference championship game, said following the contest that he used Tebow’s character as an example of how he wanted his players to conduct themselves.

Raised in a family with missionaries as parents, Tebow has followed in their footsteps. He frequently participates in overseas missions to countries such as the Philippines, Thailand and Croatia. He speaks to and prays with prison inmates and has visited orphanages and leper colonies and volunteers at hospitals.

The presenter, Dr. Dennis, is a former vice president of the United States Olympic Committee (USOC) and superintendent of Denver Public Schools. She was the first woman to serve as a chef de mission for the USOC in the 1988 South Korean Summer Olympics. As an educator, Dr. Dennis was an active advocate of gender equity in athletics and monitored the U.S. District Court order to desegregate Denver Public Schools.

The Jackie Robinson Humanitarian Award is presented to an individual who has demonstrated a concern for mankind. The winner should exhibit the qualities of dedication, grace under pressure, personal sacrifice, compassion, hope, and dignity that characterize the promotion of human welfare and social reform.

Jack Roosevelt Robinson broke the baseball color barrier by displaying his skills while at the same time subjugating his pride, to prove an awareness of our failings as well as his abilities. Had he lacked the discipline, not to mention the dedication, America and sport would be spiritually and athletically poorer.

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