The Walter Camp “Man of the Year” award honors an individual who has been closely associated with the game of football as a player, coach or close attendant to the game. He must have attained a measure of success and been a leader in his chosen profession. He must have contributed to the public service for the benefit of his community, country and his fellow man. He must have an impeccable reputation for integrity and must be dedicated to our American Heritage and the philosophy of Walter Camp.
2016 Man of the Year ~ Warrick Dunn, Florida State
Former Florida State and NFL standout Warrick Dunn is the recipient of the Walter Camp Football Foundation’s 2016 “Man of the Year” award. “Warrick Dunn’s life story is one of tragedy, but also of triumph” said Foundation president Robert Kauffman. “His ability to persevere, succeed and ultimately, help others is inspirational and makes him a worthy Man of the Year recipient.”
Born in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, Dunn was a scholastic standout at Catholic High School. During his senior year, his mother Betty Smothers, a police officer, was tragically killed while making a night deposit as an off duty officer. Dunn, just 18, became the head of his family and raised his siblings.
Dunn earned a scholarship to Florida State University, and proceeded to set several FSU school rushing records, including yards in a season (1,242 in 1995) and career yards (3,359). He was a three-time All-Atlantic Coast Conference honoree. As a freshman, Dunn was a key member of the Seminoles’ national championship team in 1993, totaling 868 yards from scrimmage and 10 touchdowns. Dunn also was an accomplished sprinter on the FSU track & field squad, earned All-America honors as a member of the 4 x 100 meter relay team.
Dunn was a first-round draft choice of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers with the 12th overall pick in 1997. He made an immediate impact, earning Offensive Rookie of the Year honors. He played five seasons with the Buccaneers and earned two Pro Bowl berths (1997 and 2000). He then played the next six years with the Atlanta Falcons and rushed for 1,000 or more yards three times. He signed with the Buccaneers in 2008, and retired following the season.
Dunn rushed for 10,967 yards during his professional career, and scored 49 touchdowns. His results on the playing field are impressive, and his efforts off the field are even more extraordinary.
In 1997, he established Homes for the Holidays, which rewards single-parent families for reaching first-time homeownership. In 2002, he started the Warrick Dunn Charities, which strives to improve lives through innovative ways. In 2007, Dunn was a founding member of Athletes for Hope, which is designed to help professional athletes develop their passion for philanthropy.
In 2004, he was named the Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year, and received the Giant Steps Award in civic leadership by former President Bill Clinton. In addition he, was the 2010 Heisman Humanitarian Award recipient and was recognized with the Jefferson Humanitarian Award for Public Service. In 2008, Dunn told his extraordinary story in the book, Running for My Life. He currently resides in Atlanta.
by Al Carbone
“Outstanding event! They took very good care of me and the crowd was wonderful. A well managed event and made you feel comfortable every step of the way! I am glad I came. I met some great people.”
Jerome Bettis2014 Man of the Year
Previous Award Winners
Joe Andruzzi – Southern Connecticut State University (2015)
Jerome Bettis – University of Notre Dame (2014)
Matt Millen – The Pennsylvania State University (2013)
Herm Edwards – San Diego State University (2012)
Harry Carson – South Carolina State University (2011)
Will Shields – University of Nebraska (2010)
John Elway – Stanford University (2009)
Morten Andersen – Michigan State University (2008)
Richard “Dick” Butkus – University of Illinois (2007)
Mike Utley – Washington State University (2006)
Dwight Stephenson – University of Alabama (2005)
Anthony Munoz – University of Southern California (2004)
Ozzie Newsome – University of Alabama (2003)
Jim Kelly – University of Miami (2002)
Mike Singletary – Baylor University (2001)
Howie Long – Villanova University (2000)
Gil Brandt – Dallas Cowboys (1999)
Lou Holtz – Kent State University (1998)
Calvin Hill – Yale University (1997)
Lynn Swann – University of Southern California (1996)
Reggie Williams – Dartmouth College (1995)
Dick Anderson – University of Colorado (1994)
Warren Moon – University of Washington (1993)
Bob Griese – Purdue University (1992)
Melvin C. Blount – Southern University (1991)
Nicholas Buoniconti – University of Notre Dame (1990)
Paul Brown – Miami University (1989)
Andy Robustelli – Arnold College (1988)
Levi A. Jackson – Yale University (1987)
Willie D. Davis – Grambling College (1986)
Rocky Bleier – University of Notre Dame (1985)
Don Shula – John Carroll University (1984)
Roger Staubach – U.S.N.A. (1983)
Merlin Jay Olsen – Utah State University (1982)
Captain Otto E. Graham, Jr. – Northwestern University (1981)
Gale Sayers – University of Kansas (1980)
Hon. Jack Kemp – Occidental College (1979)
Floyd Little – Syracuse University (1978)
Fred Dunlap – Colgate University (1977)
Edward W. Krause – University of Notre Dame (1976)
Col. Peter M. Dawkins, U.S.M.A. (1975)
Alonzo S. “Jake” Gaither – Knoxville College, Florida A&M University (1974)
Hugh Duffy Daugherty – Syracuse University, Michigan State University (1973)