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    Brought together by excellence

    A coach's dream

    Photo By Staff Sgt. Andrew Valles | David Trosper, Connor High School head football coach in Hebron, Ky., and best friend...... read more read more

    SAN ANTONIO, TX, UNITED STATES

    01.04.2014

    Story by Sgt. Andrew Valles 

    205th Theater Public Affairs Support Element

    SAN ANTONIO – Drew Barker and Andrew Way, best friends and football teammates from Conner High School in Hebron, Ky., were able to come together while both were recognized for excellence during the 2014 U.S. Army All-American Bowl in San Antonio.

    While Barker's skills as a quarterback paved his way to the AAB, Way was presented the U.S. Army and Pro Football Hall of Fame Award for Excellence by Sgt. Maj. of the Army Raymond F. Chandler III and Hall of Fame football player Rod Woodson at the Lila Cockrell Theatre Jan. 3, 2014.

    The U.S. Army and the Pro Football Hall of Fame partnered to create the Award for Excellence Program to highlight the nation's top 10 sophomore and junior high school athletes who not only excel athletically, but who also are active in their own communities and distinguish themselves academically.

    “The nominees for the Award for Excellence possess a unique set of strengths and adherence to a core set of values shared by 'Army Strong' soldiers,” said Mark Davis, deputy assistant Secretary of the Army for Marketing and director of the Army Marketing and Research Group. “Way is an outstanding scholar, athlete and citizen and we are proud that he is our recipient of this prestigious honor.”

    Barker expressed how excited he was about his friend receiving the award and why he deserved such an honor.

    “Andrew always put as much effort as he can into football and double in the classroom. He's definitely very deserving,” Barker said. “He's a great example of how you should handle yourself on and off the field. It's just awesome that he won.”

    It is not all the time that two student-athletes from the same school are represented at this level expressed Connor High School Head Football Coach David Trosper.

    “For our community and our program to have two guys to be involved in such high-priority deals is unexplainable,” said Trosper. “It's unbelievable, this is what, as a coach, you dream about ... Andrew fits everything the Army is about, and as a coach, he fits what we are all about.”

    Despite all his work to earn the award, when Way's name was announced a look of surprise came across his face.

    “I can't believe I won this award. It truly is an honor to win an award that is involved with the U.S. Army and everything that the Army stands for,” Way said.

    As shocked as he was for earning such a prestigious award, Way was just as struck that his best friend was there to share the moment as more than just a spectator.

    “Drew has been my best friend since we were kids and it is great that we have someone representing us in the game. It feels like it was meant to be since we are both here. It's just an honor,” Way said.

    Hall of Fame football player Anthony Munoz believes strongly on awarding more than just athletic abilities.

    “I think it is excellent to be able to recognize more than just athletic accomplishments,” Munoz said. “To be able to recognize a total person, somebody who does well in the classroom and gives back to the community, is what makes this truly special.”

    This is the second year of the Pro Football Hall of Fame highlighting the many achievements of America's youth. Giving that recognition is extremely important to the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

    “The Pro Football Hall of Fame is proud to continue its mission to educate and promote the excellence that comes with America's favorite game, football, and combine it with the U.S. Army's mission of excellence in school, community service and through athletics,” said George Veras, president and CEO, Pro Football Hall of Fame Enterprises. “We are excited to continue our partnership with the U.S. Army and to recognize student-athletes across the country for their outstanding achievements and hard work.”

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    NEWS INFO

    Date Taken: 01.04.2014
    Date Posted: 01.04.2014 20:52
    Story ID: 118846
    Location: SAN ANTONIO, TX, US 
    Hometown: HEBRON, KY, US

    Web Views: 317
    Downloads: 0

    PUBLIC DOMAIN