FAU seniors spend one final night in their stadium
It took a little while, but FAU did the right thing for the seniors from last year's football team.
On Friday night the Owls hosted the annual football banquet in the stadium. The event, which is normally held in January, was postponed while FAU tried to get its football house in order.
FAU considering skipping the banquet altogether – which is not uncommon following coaching changes – but ultimately chose to honor the outgoing seniors.
Approximately 15 graduated seniors attended the event, along with a couple undergrads like Graham Wilbert and Andrew Stryffeler who received awards. Players on the current football team for the most part did not participate. They practiced right up until the start of the event, and they have a bit of a busy day today.
Howard Schnellenberger presented the MVP awards – a list of other awards can be found at the end of this blog. Spoiler Alert: Alfred Morris and Marcus Bartels shared the Team MVP award.
Current FAU coach Carl Pelini attended the banquet. I suspect you'll be seeing this photo of Pelini and Schnellenberger for years to come. In his speech to the graduated seniors, Schnellenberger implored them to return to the school and lend their voices to help build the program. He once once again asked them to lend their support to the new football regime.
“We will make Carl Pelini a superstar,” he said.
This marks the third year I've attended the football banquet. For me, the best part is seeing the players get all dressed up. Those who know me understand that I ooze fashion sense. My vote for the best dressed player goes to Marcus Bartels (second photo). Fantastic bow tie – even if it was the first time he ever tied it...
Alfred Morris and Kevin Cyrille also put in good showings.
This event finally closes the book on that dreadful 2011 season. Later today comes the spring game, where we'll all see what Pelini and crew have been managed to put together.
To close the season, though, FAU seniors spent one last night in the stadium they waited so long for. Not a bad reminder of what their careers produced.
To see the remainder of the photos, check out this Photo Gallery.
Student Athlete Award: Graham Wilbert
Non Scholarship MVP: MVP David Baptiste
Most Improved: Chris Newbold
Ramon Rickards Memorial Bone Award: Marcus Bartels
Special Teams MVP: Mickey Groody
Offensive MVP: Alfred Morris
Defensive MVP: Kevin Cyrille
Team Co-MVPs: Alfred Morris/Marcus Bartels
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Florida Atlantic 9, Louisiana-Monroe 7
FIU 2, Louisiana-Lafayette 1
UALR 18, South Alabama 7
Middle Tennessee 12, Troy 10
Arkansas State 5, Western Kentucky 0