The Prep Pigskin Report
|The Prep Pigskin Report|
|Genre||Sports (High School Football)|
|Country of origin||United States|
|No. of seasons||15|
|No. of episodes||220 (as of the start of 15th Season)|
|Running time||60 Minutes|
|Original run||September 4, 1998 – present|
The Prep Pigskin Report is an American high school football show created by Paul Rudy and McKinnon Broadcasting. The show debuted on September 4, 1998, on the independent station KUSI-TV in San Diego.
The Prep Pigskin Report has won 7 times out of the 14 nominations for the Best Sports Program Emmy in the Pacific Southwest region. Winning years include 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2010 and 2011. In addition to the five to seven pre-produced features, the PPR regularly shows highlights from as many as 40 games played in San Diego County.
Current On-Air Talent for the PPR
As the commander-in-chief of KUSI's Prep Pigskin Report, Paul Rudy has grown the once three person team of enthusiasts to a band of over 75 passionate "pigs" who cover the entire San Diego region's high school football games.
Paul Rudy graduated from St. Norbert College in 1982 and worked as a professional tennis instructor until he landed his first big break with a TV job at WKOW-TV in Madison, Wisconsin as an overnight news photographer. He eventually made his way into the sports department in what was, as he puts it, "the demotion of a lifetime!" That demotion spurred award-winning programming spanning nearly thirty years over eight different stations and three different time zones.
Rudy considers himself a circus juggler as the creator and headmaster of the PPR, and he knows it's his biggest career success: “The PPR is my Sgt. Pepper...Unless you count the 6-and-5 season my senior year at Madison Edgewood High.”
Currently, the PPR is in its 15th season and there's no signs of slowing down for the head honcho and his band of misfits.
Rick Willis is the upbeat Pigskin correspondent in North County. He not only covers the North County Game of the Week, he also produces the Prep Pigskin Report and takes snazzy photos for his Instagram.
It took some probing for Rick to find his passion in television: he had stints as a bus boy, dishwasher, server, valet parking attendant, substitute teacher, oil field worker, landscaper, chef, gas station attendant, and construction worker. It wasn't until he got an internship with KUSI in the news department post-graduation that he started the path to Pigskin success. After only two weeks of fetching coffee, printing scripts, making phone calls and doing anything and everything in hopes of standing out, he interviewed for a "sudden" opening in the KUSI sports department. You guessed it...he got the job!
Willis worked for two years as an associate producer for the Prep Pigskin Report before becoming the sports director of KIEM-TV in Eureka, California. Thirteen months later a sports position opened at KUSI and Willis was happy to return home.
Willis is a lifelong San Diegan. He graduated from San Dieguito High School in Encinitas (now San Dieguito Academy) and went on to get a Journalism degree from San Diego State. He was one of the "Original Pigs" and was given the title of Producer for the PPR in 2010. Two Emmys and several grey hairs later, he considers it one of the best professional moments of his life.
John Soderman is the South Bay Game of the Week correspondent. His unique ability to wear shorts in any weather (a true accomplishment for San Diegans who only feel comfortable in a window of 15 degrees) and his creation of the "South Bay Shuffle" have left a mark on the community he's covered during his entire tenure at the PPR.
After serving honorably in the United States Marine Corps, Soderman was a police officer for the Tustin P.D for three years. Soderman was also involved in sports from early on. His career cumulated as a pitcher in minor league baseball for the Oakland Athletics and the California Angels. His claim-to-fame? He gave up a homerun to then 17-year-old former Padres star Tony Gwynn. “I was horrible,” says Soderman, “I threw three pitches…a double, a triple and a homerun.”
This twenty-eight-year veteran’s broadcast career has spanned over eight different markets including Los Angeles and eventually leading to San Diego. Soderman’s passion for the PPR stems from what it means for the community and players he covers each week. “In my humble opinion,” says Soderman, “the PPR, created by Paul Rudy, is hands down the best high school football show in the country!”
In Soderman's spare time, he plays drums for the local Motown band 'The Corvelles.' He has been with the group for nine years and has even performed at the Silver Pigskin Gala in years past. Soderman names his biggest accomplishment so far in life without hesitation: marrying his wife Dalva at a time when he was so afraid of marriage. She has since given them the love of their lives, their son Matthew, who was on the PPR just days after he was born!
Stephanie Kelly is the East County Game of the Week reporter.
A local herself, Kelly attended Poway High and then University of San Diego High School (now Cathedral Catholic). Her education continued at the University of San Diego, where in 2003 she earned a degree in Communication. When trying to find her passion in college, this natural born competitor made the choice to pursue a career in sports broadcasting, “I love sports and I love to hear myself talk, so sports journalism just seemed like the natural fit.”
Kelly’s path to PPR fame and fortune began with an internship in the KUSI sports department. Her career was shaped early by the brilliant minds of Paul Rudy and Rick Willis. “After two semesters of interning I joined the PPR for my first season. I knew immediately this was a show that I wanted to be a part of for as long as possible.”
When Kelly's not running around the East County in her red jacket, you're likely to find her throwing golf clubs at a local golf course, cheering on the NC State Wolfpack and eagerly awaiting the debut of Tom Brady’s latest hairstyle.
Follow her on Twitter: @StephPPR
Entering her sixth season on the show, Allie Wagner is looking forward to her new role as the host of Friday morning's Alarm Clock Pep Rally and the Social Media Correspondent.
Wagner knew she wanted to have a career in sports broadcasting from the age of nine. "I would watch Monday Night Football and just know that I needed to be involved in sports broadcasting," she said. After Wagner graduated from Ramona High School, she pursued a journalism degree at San Diego State.
She soon landed her first job working in radio for XTRA Sports 1360/KOGO before she came over to work with the PPR as a field producer. Working her way up the ladder, Wagner has been producing and reporting on sports for KUSI full-time for the past two years.
Wagner enjoys covering high school football because the game played in this format is the game at its best. "It is football at its most basic, with people who are truly passionate about the game," says Wagner, "The PPR is a way to stay a child at heart being able to watch all the excitement that goes on with these kids and be right in the middle of it all."
When Wagner's not mentoring newbie Pigs, she's watching football and staying active with beach volleyball, workouts and walking her dog, Jack.
Brandon Stone has dual roles for the PPR: City Game of the Week and the Student Athlete Spotlight. This once intern now holds a permanent position with KUSI as a reporter.
When Stone was in the 8th grade, he was driving to school with his father when he decided he would not only be a journalist, but he would go to SDSU and have a broadcasting career in San Diego. Stone says the decision to pursue a career in sports broadcasting was something that just came to him one day, “like a message from above.” Since then, Stone has lived up to his word and has never looked back.
Stone earned a BA in Journalism at SDSU with a minor in religious studies in 2008. He got his foot in the door after his 8am news-writing professor announced to the class that there was an opening with Paul Rudy at KUSI as an intern. “I didn't even wait for class to finish,” Stone says, “I think the professor made the announcement at 8:03 and I had signed up by 8:10.” Stone only interned for a few months when he got the news that he would join the PPR team as a field producer. “I called up my girlfriend in Santa Barbara (now wife) and told her she needed to come to San Diego.”
For most, the PPR stands for community, students and fun, but for Stone it represents an outfit choice he has to deal with. "The only tough thing about the show is the outfit...not a fan of the red jacket. But don't tell Paul Rudy."
When Stone is “not” wearing the red jacket for the PPR, he enjoys watching football and NASCAR, attending dueling piano shows and cooking.
Jake is no stranger to the PPR—he was a former Silver Pigskin winner in 2004.
The locally grown, former Hilltop High School quarterback started his broadcasting journey in 2008 when he interned for a semester in the sports department. He soon went on to Arizona State University where he received his BA in broadcast journalism in 2010. Returning to San Diego, Jake accepted a spot with PPR as a field producer: “I owe it all to the PPR for leading me into my career path.”
Jake remembers his former football life fondly. “It was such a huge thing. People don’t realize the effort students put into the football games. It's great that the PPR celebrates that effort and gives your school some love for all their hard work.” Jake was also very humbled when he was awarded the Silver Pigskin. “It was a huge honor, especially for Hilltop. To be in the company of current and former NFL players who have also been winners and nominees was truly amazing. I was especially taken back by how the community rallied together to vote me as the winner.”
As a huge fantasy football and San Diego sports fan, you can catch Jake actively involved in both when he's not running around for the PPR.
Coach John Shacklett’s reappearance means the much anticipated return of Shack’s Pig Pen, a segment of the show that celebrates and features outstanding interior lineman and tight ends. Coach Shack is a Grossmont High School and San Diego State University graduate turned head football coach. His 32 year tenure with Morse High School consisted of 18 league championships, five CIF-SD County championships and a three time runner-up from 1979-1996. In addition to the PPR, Coach has decided to return to the sidelines, “I have entered into a new experience in coaching my grandson's Mighty Mite football team composed of 8 and 9 year olds, it’s humbling at best.”
Former on-air talent
- Mike Castellucci: Former host of the Alarm Clock Pep Rally (2009-2012).
- DeJuan Hoggard: Former co-host of PPR Plus.
- Kerri Sargent-Lane: Former reporter for the City Game of the Week (2009–10), and the Student Athlete (2008–09). She is currently a traffic reporter for Good Morning San Diego on KUSI-TV.
- Lucia Stone: Former reporter for the Student Athlete Spotlight (2006-2007). She currently works in Community Relations at San Diego Gas & Electric.
- Steve Quis: Former reporter for the North County Game of the Week (2000-2005). He is currently a Los Angeles radio broadcaster and high school play-by- play announcer.
- Charles Dimry: Former reporter for the City Game of the Week (2004–05). He is currently the owner of Velocity Sports Performance.
- Lena Lewis: Former reporter for the City Game of the Week (2003-2005), and the Student Athlete (2003). She is the former the Director of Communications for the Bob Filner for Mayoral Campaign.
- Doug Curlee: Former reporter for the East County Game of the Week (2000–02). He is currently retired and living in east San Diego County.
- Rod Mackey: Former reporter for the North County Game of the Week (1999-2000). He is currently the sports anchor and Denver Broncos reporter at KUSA-TV in Denver, CO.
- Kevin Kelly: Former reporter for the East County Game of the Week (1999-2000). He is currently the main anchor for the 5:00 pm, 6:00 pm and 9:00 pm FOX 16 News in Little Rock Arkansas.
PPR Show Elements
Play of the Week: The best plays from the prior week of the PPR are reviewed and nominated for the Play of the Week. PPR fans get to watch the top plays again and vote for their favorite play on the Prep Pigskin Report's Facebook page. The winner is announced at the end of the following week’s PPR broadcast and awarded the famous “silk-cashmere” Play of the Week T-shirt.
Coach of the Week: Each week the San Diego Chargers and the PPR award a deserving head coach the prestigious Coach of the Week award. The recipient’s school is then awarded a $1500 check before the next home game to contribute to the school’s football program.
Game of the Week: During the PPR every week the top matchups are featured as Games of the Week. The best overall matchup of the week is showcased as the “San Diego County Toyota Dealers” Game of the Week. The Game of the Week highlights get more airtime and the spectacular Paul Rudy narration.
North County Game of the Week: The top game in the North County is narrated by Rick Willis and featured as the North County Game of the Week. Rick is live on the field after the game to deliver the rest of his North County highlights.
East County Game of the Week: The best action in the East County is narrated by Stephanie Kelly and named the East County Game of the Week. Stephanie delivers the highlights live from the field.
South Bay Game of the Week: The premier match up in the South Bay is highlighted by John Soderman in the South Bay Game of the Week. John broadcasts live from the field after the game.
City Game of the Week: The best game in the city is selected as the City Game of the Week and narrated in-studio by Brandon Stone.
Pigskin Idol: During each show, a current high school student is named "Pigskin Idol" and gets a chance to sit in the hot seat and broadcast a featured game’s highlights. The student goes out to the game as a field producer and then writes and narrates highlights of that featured game during the PPR. The student sportscaster gets the full “red jacket” PPR experience.
Marching Scoreboard: During every PPR show, a school’s band, color and pageantry are featured on the broadcast. The scores of the games that night run in a “Ticker Style” underneath the band’s performance.
Shack's Pig Pen: During every show, legendary coach John Shacklett features an outstanding offensive or defensive lineman and inducts them into his “Pig Pen.” These athlete’s skills in the trenches and the classroom, along with their future plans are discussed and featured.
Student Athlete Spotlight: Every week, Brandon Stone selects a deserving student-athlete with unique talents and features them in the Student Athlete Spotlight. This outstanding student’s talents on and off the field are highlighted with an emphasis on their academic achievements.
Pig Poll: The PPR engages its fans to interact with the show via Facebook or Twitter through the Pig Poll. The PPR asks a question and the viewers responses are featured on-air during the PPR.
Ham Radio: Every week, the PPR puts a microphone on a prominent player for the entire game. The best of the night’s sights and sounds are blended together for an NFL Films-style feature.
PPR Raw: The newest addition is the PPR Raw, which includes all of the highlights from each game that may or may not have made air. These extended highlights show the best of each game with no time restrictions. PPR Raw highlights from every game are posted to the PPR Facebook page and on the PPR page at KUSI.com.
PPR Hogcasts: Every week, the PPR Team of Pigs scour the weekly schedule of games for interesting stories both on the field and off. See the best interviews on the PPR Youtube page and the PPR Facebook page every week.
Inactive/Former PPR Segments
PPR Plus: Immediately following the over the air broadcast of the PPR, PPR Plus begins at KUSI.com. The 30 minute internet show is hosted by Allie Wagner & Jake Fadden. The program includes more highlights, post-game reaction, big analysis, and in studio guests.
Chalk Talk: In a segment no longer on the show, every episode a coach was chosen to draw up their favorite play on a chalk board. The coach and his team then ran the play in practice in front of the PPR cameras to see exactly what made it successful.
Pigskin Unplugged: In a feature no longer seen on the show, each week the PPR cameras would be inside the pre-game locker room to hear what the head coach has to say to fire up his team.
Pop Warner Team of the Week: A local youth football team is highlighted by Allie Wagner, who showcases these youngsters’ hard work and enthusiasm for football. Players are interviewed about their season and their love for the game. No longer seen on the show.
PPR loves interacting with players, fans and anyone who loves high school football. The PPR's social media is fun and informed community and the show likes to award their social media participants with on-air mentions, classy PPR T-shirts and more. Follow along on the following sites:
The Silver Pigskin Award
The prestigious Silver Pigskin Trophy is the most coveted award in high school sports today. Designed by Dutch Perry in 1998, the silver trophy with platinum in-lays took more than 100 man-hours to craft. The one-of-a-kind trophy weighs in at 35 pounds and stands a proud two feet tall.
In its infancy, the Silver Pigskin was awarded to the athlete involved in the “Best Play of the Season.” However, as the Prep Pigskin Report has evolved, so has the Silver Pigskin.
Today, the priceless trophy is awarded annually to San Diego County’s most outstanding football player. Some of San Diego’s greatest and most controversial prep football players are immortalized on the side of this breathtaking jewel.
The finalists are chosen by the Prep Pigskin Report Player of the Year Board of Trustees and by viewers of the PPR. Once the finalists are determined, the vote goes to the people. Ballots are mailed to every San Diego County high school head football coach, local sports media, and every member of the PPR staff.
The fans also have a role in determining the outcome through our online Facebook poll. The fan vote ultimately represents ten percent of the final vote. In 2010, the PPR received nearly 5,000 Facebook fan votes.
Since 2010, Facebook is also used to put the final name on the Silver Pigskin podium. In 2010, Mar Vista’s Rommel Cooper became the first nominee by fan vote, defeating four other players. In 2011, Landon Lozoya made the podium above eight other nominees, spurred by a school wide voting initiative that made local news coverage. In 2012, the honor went to Otay Ranch's Chris Martin.
Silver Pigskin Gala
Every season the PPR holds a Gala to declare the Silver Pigskin winner, as well as reflect on the highs and lows of the season. The Gala was held at the KUSI studios in San Diego for the first six seasons of the program before moving to the San Diego Hall of Champions at Balboa Park in 2005.
Starting in 2010, the Player of the Year committee also awards the Iron Hog to the best offensive or defensive lineman in the county. In 2013, Madison's Tiasamo Savusa was awarded the Iron Hog. In 2012, La Costa Canyon’s Scott Quessenberry was honored. He is now playing for UCLA. In 2011, fellow Maverick Erik Magnusson won the award. The Mavericks’ left tackle is now playing at Michigan. In 2010, Helix’s Sam Meredith took home the award. Meredith is now at San Diego State.
The 2013 Silver Pigskin Gala was held on December 10 at the San Diego Hall of Champions. Imperial's Royce Freeman defeated five other nominees to win the 15th Silver Pigskin, the first for Imperial.
- Royce Freeman (Imperial High School)
- Thai Cotrell (Oceanside High School)
- Anthony Lawrence (Grossmont High School)
- Isiah Olave (Eastlake High School)
- Jajuan Thomas (San Pasqual High School) *Fan Vote
- Fred Warner (Mission Hills High School)
The 2012 Silver Pigskin Gala was held on December 11 at the San Diego Hall of Champions. Oceanside's Israel "Tofi" Paopao was the winner in one of the closest votes of all time.
- Israel "Tofi" Paopao (Oceanside High School)
- Derek Babiash (Poway High School)
- Darren Carrington, Jr. (Horizon High School)
- Pierre Cormier (Madison High School)
- Chris Martin (Otay Ranch High School) *Fan Vote
- Justin Williams (El Camino)
The 2011 Silver Pigskin Gala was held on December 6 at the San Diego Hall of Champions. Helix High quarterback Brandon Lewis defeated four other nominees to win the Silver Pigskin, making Helix the first school with multiple Silver Pigskin winners.
- Brandon Lewis (Helix High School)
- Shawn Boose (Kearny High School)
- Chase Knox (Madison High School)
- Landon Lozoya (Santana High School) *fan vote
- Taylor McNamara (Westview High School)
The 2010 Silver Pigskin Gala was held on December 13 at the San Diego Hall of Champions. Vista cornerback/wide receiver Stefan McClure took home the Silver Pigskin.
- Stefan McClure (Vista High School)
- Travis Bernard (Valley Center High School)
- Rommell Cooper (Mar Vista High School) *fan vote
- Evan Crower (St. Augustine High School)
- Diego Rodriguez (Montgomery High School)
The 2009 Silver Pigskin Gala was held on December 15 at the San Diego Hall of Champions. In what was the most star-studded event in the Gala’s history, from broken records to college commitments, Mission Bay running back Dillon Baxter won the Silver Pigskin over 5 finalists, the first time 6 men have been on the stage.
- Brennan Clay (Scripps Ranch High School)
- Tony Jefferson (Eastlake High School)
- Kenny Stills (La Costa Canyon High School)
- Ricky Seale (Escondido High School)
- Pete Thomas (Valhalla High School)
The 2008 Silver Pigskin Gala was held on December 19 at the San Diego Hall of Champions. Tyler Gaffney was the runaway winner in the 10th edition of the event.
- Tyler Gaffney (Cathedral High School)
- Tate Forcier (Scripps Ranch High School)
- James Johnson (Valley Center High School)
- Robbie Rouse (Madison High School)
- Jordan Wynn (Oceanside High School)
The 2007 Silver Pigskin Gala was held on December 14 at the San Diego Hall Of Champions. Nelson Rosario became the first Silver Pigskin winner to not be in attendance, as he was on a recruiting trip in Los Angeles, but still accepted his award via satellite.
- Sam Brenner (Oceanside High School)
- Ryan Deehan (Poway High School)
- DJ Shields (Bonita Vista High School)
- Jamar Taylor (Helix High School)
The 2006 Silver Pigskin Gala was held on December 5 at the San Diego Hall of Champions.
- Darrell Catchings (Escondido High School)
- Todd Doxey (Hoover High School)
- Gino Gordon (Francis Parker High School)
- Stanley Paul (La Costa Canyon High School)
The 2005 Silver Pigskin Gala was held on December 8 at the San Diego Hall of Champions.
- Abraham Muheize (El Cajon Valley High School)
- Josh Holmes (Point Loma High School)
- Brandon Sullivan (Poway High School)
- Demetrius Sumler (Cathedral High School)
- Will Yeatman (Rancho Bernardo High School)
The 2004 Silver Pigskin Gala was held on December 10 at the KUSI studios.
- Jake Fadden (Hilltop High School)
- Jason Forcier (St. Augustine High School)
- Darrick Jackson (Escondido High School)
- Clayton Tunney (La Costa Canyon High School)
- Jon Toledo (La Costa Canyon High School)
The 2003 Silver Pigskin Gala was held in December at the KUSI studios.
- Patrick Gates (Marian Catholic High School)
- Demarco Sampson (Castle Park High School)
- Arian Foster (Mission Bay High School)
- Fevaea'i Ahmu (Serra High School)
The 2002 Silver Pigskin Gala was held on December 14 at the KUSI studios.
- Reggie Bush (Helix High School)
- Victor Trinidad (Sweetwater High School)
- Tim Turner (Valley Center High School)
The 2001 Silver Pigskin Gala was held in December at the KUSI studios.
- Reggie Bush (Helix High School)
- Freddy Dunkle (Castle Park High School)
- Naftalie Nahiwawa (West Hills High School)
- Aaron Singh (Carlsbad High School)
The 2000 Silver Pigskin Gala was held in December at the KUSI studios.
- Ryan Gonzalez (St. Augustine High School)
- Ja Ja Riley (Mission Bay High School)
- Damaja Jones (Helix High School)
- Trandon Harvey (Sweetwater High School)
The inaugural 1999 Silver Pigskin Gala was held in December at the KUSI studios.
- Patrick Konen (Patrick Henry High School)
- Vernon Smith (Mission Bay High School)
- Josh Sierra (Grossmont High School)
- PPR Facebook Page
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