Touchdown Club of Columbus

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Logo of the Touchdown Club of Columbus

The Touchdown Club of Columbus was founded in Columbus, Ohio, in 1956 by Sam B. Nicola at the request of state auditor James A. Rhodes, who later became governor of the state.[1] Nicola served as the club's president until his death in 1993. More than a decade later, his son Sam Nicola Jr. took over the Touchdown Club.[1]


The Touchdown Club of Columbus gives several awards to recognize outstanding athletes.[2][3]

Sammy Baugh Trophy[edit]

The Sammy Baugh Trophy is awarded annually to the nation's top collegiate passer.

Jim Brown Award[edit]

This honor goes to the NCAA's top running back, recently named for Hall of Famer Jim Brown.

Paul Warfield Trophy[edit]

Named for Paul Warfield, this honor is given to the nation's top collegiate wide receiver.

Jim Parker Trophy[edit]

Given yearly to the top collegiate offensive lineman. Named for Ohio State great and Hall of Famer Jim Parker.

Bill Willis Trophy[edit]

Named for Bill Willis, this award is given yearly to the top collegiate defensive lineman.

Jack Lambert Trophy[edit]

Named for Jack Lambert, this award is given yearly to the top collegiate linebacker.

Jack Tatum Trophy[edit]

Since 1991, the Jack Tatum Trophy is given yearly to the top collegiate defensive back. Named after the legendary Jack Tatum

Archie Griffin Award[edit]

The Archie Griffin Award signifies college football's most valuable player for the entire season.[4][5] It is named in honor of the only two-time Heisman Trophy winner, Archie Griffin of Ohio State.

Chic Harley Award[edit]

Named for Chic Harley, this award is presented to the College Football Player of the Year.

Kellen Moore Award[edit]

Previously called the Quarterback of the Year Award, this accolade differs from Sammy Baugh Trophy in that it goes to top quarterback, rather than the top passer. Its name was changed to its current identity in 2012, honoring two-time winner Kellen Moore, who became the FBS all-time leader in wins by a quarterback after going 50–3 as the starter at Boise State.

Ozzie Newsome Award[edit]

Named for Ozzie Newsome, this award is presented annually to the top collegiate tight end.

Woody Hayes Trophy[edit]

Named for Woody Hayes, this award recognizes the top collegiate coach.

Freshman of the Year[edit]

Given yearly to the top college football newcomer.

Vlade Award[edit]

Named in honor of Vlade Janakievski, one of the most accurate placekickers in Ohio State football history, this award is given yearly to the most accurate college football kicker.

Paul Brown Trophy[edit]

Named for Paul Brown, this trophy is presented annually to the NFL Coach of the Year.

Joe F. Carr Trophy[edit]

Named for Joseph Carr, this trophy was presented annually (from 1955-1978) to the NFL Player of the Year. Not to be confused with the Joe F. Carr Trophy which was the official National Football League MVP award from 1938-46. However, both trophies are named after Carr, a former NFL commissioner.

Sam B. Nicola Trophy[edit]

Named for the Club's founder, this trophy is presented annually to the National High School Player of the Year.

  • 1981 Kevin Wihite Cordova, CA
  • 1982 Robert Banks Hampton, VA
  • 1983 Chris Spielman Massilon, OH
  • 1984 Ned Bolcar Phillipsburg, NJ
  • 1985 Jeff George Indianapolis, IN
  • 1986 Emmitt Smith Pensacola, FL
  • 1987 Todd Marinovich Mission Viejo, CA

James A. Rhodes Trophy[edit]

The James A. Rhodes Trophy is awarded annually to the Ohio High School player of the year.

Muhammad Ali Trophy[edit]

This annual recognition goes to the nation's top boxer.

TDC Lifetime Achievement Award[edit]

The Touchdown Club also gives the annual TDC Lifetime Achievement Award to a selected athlete.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b History
  2. ^ Awards
  3. ^ PastHonorees
  4. ^ Chris, Trevino (January 4, 2017). "Darnold wins Archie Griffin Award". CBS Sports. Retrieved January 15, 2017. 
  5. ^ Scrivens, Sarah (January 4, 2017). "USC QB Sam Darnold wins 2016 Archie Griffin Award". ESPN. Retrieved January 15, 2017. 
  6. ^ "Cassady to Receive Harley Award Tonight". The Coshocton Democrat. United Press. January 20, 1956. p. 12. Retrieved January 29, 2017. 
  7. ^ Howell, Fritz (January 15, 1965). "Columbus TD Club To Honor Sports Figures". The Daily Reporter. Associated Press. p. 11. Retrieved January 29, 2017. 
  8. ^ Greiner, John (May 3, 1979). "Sims, Sooners Suit Up For Big Senate Shindig". The Daily Oklahoman. p. 5. Retrieved January 29, 2017. 
  9. ^ Fravel, Cory (December 5, 2016). "Watson to Receive Chic Harley National Player of the Year". CBS Sports. Retrieved January 15, 2017. 

External links[edit]