Thursday, April 21, 2011
--SERIES TO FEATURE TOP 40, COUNTRY, HIP- HOP, AND CHRISTIAN RECORDING ARTISTS--
ANAHEIM, CA -- The Angels announced today that the club will feature a series of post-game concerts as part of the 50th Anniversary celebration beginning Saturday, June 11th. The five-date “Summer Concert Series” presented by SRS Labs, sponsored by Budweiser will take place at Angel Stadium following Saturday night home games and feature top recording artists from a wide genre of music.
Following the June 11th Angels vs. Royals game, International pop sensation Taio Cruz will take the stage to kickoff the concert series. Cruz’s hit song “Dynamite” has been on the charts for 45 consecutive weeks and his song “Break Your Heart” peaked at #1 on the charts in both the US and UK. He has performed on many current pop-culture prime time TV shows and is currently writing songs for Justin Bieber. Cruz is scheduled to perform during this seasons’ American Idol ® finale and his third album “Black and Leather” will be released in the coming months.
The second post-game concert will take place following the Saturday, July 9th Angels game against the Seattle Mariners. Taking the stage will be multi-platinum country star Dierks Bentley. Bentley recently released his new rowdy sing-a-long party single “Am I The Only One” to radio, as the lead single off his upcoming sixth Capitol Nashville studio project. Bentley’s new album follows in the footsteps of his critically acclaimed UP ON THE RIDGE, which earned Album of the Year nominations at the ACM, CMA and GRAMMY Awards® this year. His previous five albums have sold over five million copies, earned 10 GRAMMY nominations and spawned seven No. 1 hits. Bentley is currently headlining the 30-city 2011 Jägermeister Country Tour through mid-May.
For post-game concert number three, major Hip-Hop mogul Ludacris will perform following the Saturday, August 6th game as the Angels host the Mariners. Ludacris’ current album debuted at #1 on the charts in 2010, had the #1 single in 2006 with “Money Maker” and has won multiple Grammy Awards ® for his music. Ludacris has also played roles in numerous blockbuster movies as well as the 2004 Academy Award® winning film for Best Picture “Crash”. Additionally, he started the Ludacris Foundation to motivate middle and high school students in the field of creative arts.
As the summer winds down, the contemporary Christian band MercyMe will perform post-game on Saturday, August 20th against the Baltimore Orioles. MercyMe has sold over 6 million albums, garnered 23 multi-format #1 Christian radio singles, won awards on all major award shows and appeared on some of the biggest network television programs. The band made recent history as “I Can Only Imagine” surpassed 1 million digital downloads, making it the first song in Christian music to go platinum in the digital domain. MercyMe has had all of their recordings certified as Gold or Platinum.
Concluding the concert series on Saturday, September 3rd (Angels vs. Twins) will be smash-hit maker NE-YO. He has delivered such singles as “Miss Independent,” “Closer” and “Because of You.” He also had two albums top the charts as well as five top 10 singles. Additionally, NE-YO has written songs for music’s biggest names (Beyonce & Rihanna to name a few) as well as appearing in featuring films and prime time television.
Tickets and more information on all five concerts dates are now available on angels.com/concerts
Tuesday, April 12, 2011
ANAHEIM, CA – The Angels announced today an online contest to “Gname the Gnome.” The contest gives fans an opportunity to name the much anticipated gnome bobblehead that will be given to all fans when the Angels face the Texas Rangers on Thursday, August 18th at 7:05 p.m. The online contest is open to all fans with a creative interest.
The winner with the most unique and Angels related name will receive four field box game tickets to the August 18th game, a parking pass, online and in-game recognition, and four autographed baseballs. All entries must be under 12 characters in length and submitted by April 26, 2011.
To participate, fans can enter at angels.com/gnome. The winner will be announced online the week of May 2nd.
For more information, log-on to angels.com/gnome.
NEWPORT BEACH, Ca. – The 2011 Lott IMPACT Trophy Watch List, honoring the top collegiate defensive player in the country, was announced today at a luncheon hosted by Ronnie Lott and the Pacific Club IMPACT Foundation.
This is the eighth year that the IMPACT Foundation has recognized the student-athletes throughout the nation who have had the biggest IMPACT on their teams both on and off the field. IMPACT is an acronym for Integrity, Maturity, Performance, Academics, Community and Tenacity, characteristics that Ronnie Lott exhibited throughout his brilliant Hall of Fame career at both USC and in the National Football League.
The 2011 list of 42 (Lott’s uniform number) includes 19 defensive backs, 14 linebackers and nine defensive linemen. There are 11 players from the ACC, eight from the SEC, seven from the Big Ten, six from the Pac-10, six from the Big 12, one from the Big East, one from the Mountain West, one from the Western Athletic Conference and one from Notre Dame.
Eleven of the nominees received All-American honors a year ago and 10 were accorded academic honors in their respective conferences.
The Lott Trophy has now donated nearly $850,000 to charities since its inception in 2004, including $275,000 to 23 different universities. The winners’ school receives $25,000 annually, each of the three runner-ups $5,000 and the Lott IMPACT Player of the Week $1,000.
A national voter panel, made up of more than 200 former collegiate stars, former college coaches, members of the media and both the Lott IMPACT Board of Directors and Board of Advisors, will select the four finalists who will be honored at the annual Lott IMPACT Trophy banquet Dec. 11 in Newport Beach.
The 2011 Lott IMPACT Trophy Watch List
Emmanuel Acho, Texas, LB,
Ray-Ray Armstrong, Miami, DB
Mark Barron, Alabama, S
Jake Bequette, Arkansas, DL
Omar Bolden, Arizona State, CB
Nigel Bradham, Florida State, LB
Brodrick Brown, Oklahoma State, CB
Tank Carder, TCU, LB
Quinton Coples, North Carolina, DE
Jared Crick, Nebraska, DL
Lavonte David, Nebraska, LB
Matt Daniels, Duke, S
Tony Dye, UCLA, S
Stephon Gilmore, South Carolina, CB
Cliff Harris, Oregon, CB
Aaron Henry, Wisconsin, DB
Dont’a Hightower, Alabama, LB
Joe Holland, Purdue, LB
Jayron Hosley, Virginia Tech, CB
Delano Howell, Stanford, DB
Brandon Jenkins, Florida State, DE
Janois Jenkins, Florida, CB
Mychal Kendricks, Cal, LB
Jordan Kovacs, Michigan, S
Luke Kuechly, Boston College, LB
Travis Lewis, Oklahoma, LB
Chris Marve, Vanderbilt, LB
T.J. McDonald, USC, S
Matt Merletti, North Carolina, S
Chase Minnifield, Virginia, CB
Tyler Nielsen, Iowa, LB
Kendall Reyes, Connecticut, DT
John Simon, Ohio State, DT
Shayne Skov, Stanford, LB
Jacquies Smith, Missouri, DE
Sean Spence, Miami, LB
Kenny Tate, Maryland, S
Brandon Taylor, LSU, S
Manti Te’o, Notre Dame, LB
Prentiss Waggner, Tennessee, S
Billy Winn, Boise State, DE
Jerel Worthy, Michigan State, DT
Past winners of The Lott Trophy:
2004 – David Pollack, Georgia
2005 – DeMeco Ryans, Alabama
2006 – Dante Hughes, California
2007 – Glenn Dorsey, LSU
2008 – James Laurinaitis, Ohio State
2009 – Jerry Hughes, TCU
2010 – J.J. Watt, Wisconsin
Named after Pro Football Hall of Fame member, Ronnie Lott, The Lott Trophy is awarded to college football’s Defensive IMPACT Player of the Year. Founded in 2004 by The Pacific Club IMPACT Foundation, The Lott Trophy is the first and only college football award to equally recognize athletic performance and the personal character attributes of the player. The Lott Trophy is given to the player who exhibits the same characteristics Lott embodied during his distinguished career: Integrity, Maturity, Performance, Academics, Community and Tenacity. Voters for the award include selected members of the national media, previous finalists, the Board of Directors of the Pacific Club IMPACT Foundation and the Legends Coaches which is a distinguished group of former college football head coaches. To date, the Foundation has donated more than $850,000 to various charities throughout the country. The eighth annual Lott Trophy dinner will be held December 11th at The Pacific Club in Newport Beach, California. For more information on The Lott Trophy visit: www.LottTrophy.com.
Saturday, April 2, 2011
Dennis Rodman is a Hall of Famer, but Jamaal Wilkes is not?
The Worm is in, but Silk is not? Seriously?
It may be hard to believe, but it’s true.
Rodman let it slip Friday night during his Pistons jersey retirement ceremony that he had been asked to fly to Houston for Monday’s announcement of the latest class to be inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.
Wilkes, unfortunately, found out recently that he is, once again, not invited to attend.
This is not a knock on Rodman, who was a tremendous player during his NBA career, but his overall basketball resume falls well short of Wilkes’.
Some might argue that Rodman earned his place in the Hall by being one of the best rebounders of all-time and one of the best defenders of his generation. I have no argument with that rationale.
However, Wilkes was also one of the best of his generation at every level of competition.
As a prep All-American at Santa Barbara High School, Wilkes led the Dons to a championship.
At UCLA, Wilkes became a two-time All-American en route to winning two national titles under legendary coach John Wooden, averaging 15.0 ppg and 7.4 rpg while shooting 51.4 percent from the field. He was named to the 1972 NCAA Tournament All-Tournament team, and helped the Bruins win a NCAA record 88 games in a row.
During his 12-year NBA career, Wilkes won Rookie of the Year honors in 1975 (from a draft class that included Bill Walton, Bobby Jones, Maurice Lucas, and George Gervin), earned three trips to the All-Star game, and played on four championship teams.
Wilkes wasn’t just a winner at every level; he was a star at every level.
Plus, the last time I checked, it’s the “Basketball” Hall of Fame, not the Defense, Rebounding, or NBA Hall of Fame.
Just because Rodman earns praise for being one of the best specialists the game has ever seen, it doesn’t mean Wilkes should be overlooked because he was a better well-rounded basketball player.
And if you want to talk about defense, you might want to go back and review the film, stats and quotes regarding Wilkes ability to shut down opposing players. Marques Johnson likes to tell the story that after his first day of practice at UCLA, after being the top-rated recruit in the country, he called home crying to his father because Wilkes wouldn’t let him get a shot off during practice.
Johnson’s father responded by saying, “Boy, stop crying. Wilkes is the best defensive player in the country!”
After Johnson dried his tears and rose to the challenge of facing Wilkes in practice every day, he went on to become the first-ever recipient of the John Wooden Award signifying the best player in college basketball.
And speaking of Wooden, who won 10 national titles and coached tens of All-Americans at UCLA, he was once asked to describe his ideal player. This was his response: “I would have the player be a good student, polite, courteous, a good team player, a good defensive player and rebounder, a good inside player and outside shooter. Why not just take Jamaal Wilkes and let it go at that?"
Could there be higher praise for a player? Don’t forget, John Wooden is in the Hall of Fame as both a player and a coach. I believe the man knew a little something about talent. Or as the kids like to say, game recognizes game. Especially Hall of Fame game!
DODGERS DREAM FOUNDATION, LA84 FOUNDATION DEDICATE NEW DODGERS DREAMFIELD AT MARTIN LUTHER KING JR. RECREATION CENTER
--Field is the second Dodgers Dreamfield dedicated in 2011--
LOS ANGELES – The Dodgers Dream Foundation, in partnership with the LA84 Foundation and the Los Angeles City Department of Recreation and Parks, unveiled a new Dodgers Dreamfield this morning at Martin Luther King Jr. Recreation Center. Those on hand for the dedication ceremony included Dodger Owner and Chairman Frank McCourt, LA84 Foundation Vice President of Grants and Programs Patrick Escobar, Councilmember 8th District, Bernard C. Parks, Councilmember, 9th District Jan Perry, State Senator, 22nd District Kevin de León, General Manager of the City of Los Angeles Department of Recreation Jon Kirk Mukri and President, University Little League Raul Claros.
Former Dodgers in attendance included Fernando Valenzuela, Maury Wills, Tommy Davis, Bobby Castillo and Kenny Landreaux. Valenzuela and Wills are depicted in murals recently painted overlooking the field, as is former Dodger manager Joe Torre. Former Dodger outfielder and current broadcaster Rick Monday emceed the event.
“Baseball teaches the value of teamwork, dedication and many other important life skills, and we hope this field at Martin Luther King, Jr. Recreation Center will provide those opportunities for thousands of kids for years to come,” said Dodger Owner Frank McCourt. “We are grateful for this partnership with LA84 and the Department of Recreation and Parks that is making a difference in the lives of the youth of Los Angeles.”
Renovations to the new Dodgers Dreamfield at Martin Luther King Jr. Recreation Center include a new batting cage, a new outfield windscreen, a new LED scoreboard and new field signage. The field fencing and dugout covers were also refurbished.
“I am very pleased that even in this difficult financial time, through the efforts of the Dodgers Dream Foundation, the LA84 Foundation and the City of Los Angeles Department of Recreation and Parks, we will be able to install a total of eight new Dodgers Dreamfields in parks throughout the City of Los Angeles,” said Mukri. “Through this partnership we will rebuild and renovate these fields to give them a myriad of upgrades, as well as a whole new look and better playability. The rebuilding of these eight fields is a big step forward in achieving our collective goal of providing youth a safe and clean place to play. We are sincerely thankful to both the Dodgers Dream Foundation and LA84 for their generous donations."
All 17 University Little League teams were on hand for the dedication ceremony, which was followed by a clinic led by the Dodger alumni in attendance.
"Youngsters who love to play baseball deserve quality facilities where they can play the game to the best of their abilities,” said Escobar. “This is why the LA84 Foundation has teamed up with the Dodgers Dream Foundation and the City of Los Angeles Recreation and Parks Department to improve the field at MLK Park and others throughout the area. MLK Park has a long tradition of instilling the love for the game and developing excellent players. We are pleased to be a small part in helping this tradition continue."
"On behalf of the families and volunteers of University Little League, Life Skills Sports Academy and the MLK Park community, I'd like to thank the great people at LA84 Foundation, the Department of Recreation and Parks and the greatest organization in professional sports, the L.A. Dodgers, for partnering with us in structuring the lives of tomorrow's leaders,” said Claros.
This past summer, the Dodgers Dream Foundation, the LA84 Foundation and the Los Angeles City Department of Recreation and Parks committed to creating eight new Dodgers Dreamfields in the Los Angeles area, with a ninth field in partnership with LA County. The commitment will double the current number of Dreamfields to a total of 18. The Dodgers Dreamfield at Martin Luther King, Jr. Recreation Center marks the second of those nine and the second completed Dreamfield in 2011.
Seven of the next planned fields are within Los Angeles City Department of Recreation and Parks properties in the San Fernando Valley, Eastside, South Los Angeles and Central and Harbor areas. An additional field is located in Los Angeles County Supervisor Mark Ridley Thomas' district.