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OPINION | WALLY HALL: LRTD Club features Theismann as speaker

by Wally Hall | January 10, 2023 at 3:46 a.m.

It is not too late, but it will be soon because tickets are going fast for the Little Rock Touchdown Club's annual awards banquet on Friday.

People always come early and stay late for the regular-season luncheons, but this one is the grand finale of the season and athletes from high school to the Arkansas Razorbacks will be honored.

This year's keynote speaker is Joe Theismann, a Super Bowl winning quarterback for the Washington Redskins (now the Commanders). He played in two Super Bowls.

He was an All-American and an All-Academic quarterback for Notre Dame.

Theismann's story is one of success.

He was drafted in the fourth round by the Miami Dolphins, but the parties couldn't agree on a salary, so Theismann packed his bags and headed north to play for the Toronto Argonauts.

After three successful seasons, the Washington franchise traded for his rights, and he played 12 years before suffering a compound leg fracture that ended his career.

Theismann is an in-demand speaker, but as usual, David Bazzel found a way.

Three Arkansas Razorbacks are among the honorees.

KJ Jefferson as the University of Arkansas' Most Valuable Player, Ricky Stromberg has captured the Willie Roaf Award and Bumper Pool the Paul Eells Award.

Other awards are the Dan Hampton Defensive Lineman of the Year, the Cliff Harris for the small college defensive player of the year and the Steve Sullivan Sully Award given to the football announcer with the best call of the season.

The celebration of football is at the DoubleTree Hotel in downtown Little Rock. Tickets are $35 for members and $45 for non-members.

For more information, go to

Just a reminder, it has been sold out every year. Doors open at 10:45 a.m. and close when the last person leaves.

. . .

Speaking of great speakers and athletes, one of the all-time great American soccer players, Carli Lloyd, will be guest speaker at the All-Arkansas Preps banquet in June.

Lloyd is a two-time World Cup champion, two-time Olympic gold medalist and two-time FIFA Player of the Year.

This annual banquet honors high school athletes and coaches from basically all sports and has become a highlight of the summer.

It will again be at Little Rock's Statehouse Convention Center on June 10 beginning at 6:30 p.m.

Past speakers include Peyton Manning, Emmitt Smith, Dick Vitale, Jackie Joyner-Kersee and Cal Ripken Jr.

. . .

Despite their second loss SEC loss of the season the Arkansas Razorbacks are more than holding their own in the NCAA Net rankings where they are No. 16.

Currently, Tennessee is the highest ranked team at No. 2, followed by No. 6 Alabama, then Arkansas, followed by No. 32 Missouri, No. 33 Auburn, No. 44 Mississippi State and No. 46 Kentucky rounds out the top 50.

The NET rankings are a part of what the NCAA Tournament selection committee uses to establish its final 68 teams.

. . .

Monday was a good day for Buffalo Bills safety Damar Hamlin who left a Cincinnati hospital eight days after America saw him suffer cardiac arrest during a nationally televised game with Cincinnati.

Hamlin had excellent care on the field with almost immediate CPR given.

He's now resting comfortably at Buffalo General Medical Center where he continues to improve.

It was not a good day for Arizona Cardinals head football coach Kliff Kingsbury, who was fired after a 4-13 and last place finish in the NFC West.

Kingsbury was fired at Texas Tech and then surprisingly hired by the Cardinals. He was 28-37-1 in four seasons. The Cardinals also announced General Manager Steve Keim was stepping down for health issues.

Print Headline: LRTD Club features Theismann as speaker


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