2014 NFF Riverside County Scholar-Athlete

Banquet Script


WELCOME: Bill Powell

(5 minutes; begin promptly at 6:00 pm)


  • Get everyone seated (start seating a few minutes before 6:00)


I’d like to introduce myself. I’m Bill Powell. It’s my pleasure to welcome you to the 10th Annual NFF Riverside County Chapter Scholar-Athlete Banquet.


I will now introduce our 2014 Scholar-Athletes:


Jacob Zinda

Temescal Canyon

Marcus Williams


Kre’ tien Webb

Paloma Valley

Eric Voss

Calvary Murrieta Christian

Zachary Vasquez


Chance Spates

Palm Springs

Tyan Smith


Derek Rack

Linfield Christian

Jalen Rashan Pontious


Matt Palmer


Ruben Meza

Murrieta Mesa

P.J. Murrieta

San Jacinto

Darion McCall


Ryan Laverdiere


Kyle Kabeary

Palm Desert

Matthew Hobby

Great Oak

Coltin Gerhart

Vista Murrieta

Justin Dorsey

Cathedral City

Cody Cervantes

Canyon Springs

Reginald Weston Brown

Murrieta Valley

John Baron II


Richard Americano II



  • Let’s begin with the Pledge of Allegiance led by TBA, 2014 Scholar-Athlete Honoree from TBA High School. Please stand.

  • (While everyone is standing, TBA & TBA can take the stage)

  • Pledge of Allegiance.

  • Invocation – TBA from TBA High School



Welcome: Bill Powell

(3-5 minutes)


  • Personal remarks

  • Thank the sponsors for making this banquet possible. Request they stand when being introduced.

  1. Soboba Band of Luiseno Indians, for their 10th year of continued support.

  2. Tulips, Trophies and Treasures, provided all our trophies tonight and a personalized key tag for each athlete.

  3. Dr.Allen Pulsipher Rancho Oral and Facial Surgery Murrieta. Dr. Pulsipher has had 3 sons who were recipients of the NFF and has one coming up. He is now a proud sponsor.

  4. TBA from Paradise Chevrolet Cadillac Temecula

  5. Flavio Jaen owner Diamond Valley Honda Hemet

  6. Bobby Calloway General Manager Hyundai of La Quinta

  7. Steve Buss General Manager Crystal Chrysler

  8. Temecula Hyundai

  9. Class Act Tuxedo Temecula for providing our Scholar-Athletes with their free tux rentals.

  10. Tuxedo Exchange Cathedral for providing our Scholar-Athletes in the desert area schools with their free tux rentals.

Honorees, please thank the owners when returning your tuxedos.

  1. Mr. Jack Scott of Visual Sports Network who has continuously donated his services for this event.

  2. We are pleased to have several District Superintendents with us:

Dr. Jonathan Greenberg – Superintendent Perris Unified

Dr. Doug Kimberly – Superintendent

Pat Kelley – Murrieta Valley

CIF Commissioner – Rob Wigod

Bert Esposito – President of So. California Interscholastic Football Coaches Association




(2 minutes)


  • Introduce John Jackson

We are privileged and excited to welcome John Jackson back for the 8th year, as our Master of Ceremonies. His familiar face on Southern California sports television, having served as a high school, college and Arena Football League color analyst for Fox Sports Net. John is a former standout high school football player and NFF High School Scholar-Athlete. He was a record-setting wide receiver for the USC Trojans, establishing a total of seven school records. John was just as successful in the classroom having earned recognition as an NFF College Scholar recipient and an Academic All-American. He played four years of professional football for both the Arizona Cardinals and Chicago Bears, and played Triple-A baseball for the Angels and Twins. We very much appreciate him taking time out from his busy schedule to be here with us this evening. It is my pleasure and honor to introduce Mr. John Jackson.



(3-4 minutes)


  • Personal remarks

  • Introduce NFF Riverside County Chapter and Board:


It is now my pleasure to introduce the officers and executive board members of the National Football Foundation’s Riverside County Chapter. I would ask that the officers and board members remain standing when introduced, and that the audience hold your applause until the end.


Mr. Bill Powell, President

Mr. Bob Burt, Executive Director

Mr. Rick Alkire, Vice President

Mr. Bert Esposito, Vice President

Mrs. Candy Escalante, Treasurer

Mr. Russ Holm, Webmaster

Mrs. Carol Holm, Banquet Coordinator


And the following Executive board members:


Mr. Tony Barile

Mr. John Brandom

Mr. Coley Candaele

Mr. George Escalante

Mr. Kent Lindsay

Mr. Paul Lopez

Mr. LD Matthews

Mr. Jason McMains

Mr. Jeff Reitz

Mr. Aaron Shires


  • Introduce Chapter Executive Director Bob Burt:


It’s my pleasure to introduce our next speaker, Mr. Bob Burt. Bob is the current Executive Director and co-founder of the Riverside County Chapter of the NFF. Ladies and gentleman, Mr. Bob Burt.



(4-5 minutes)


  • Personal Remarks on the first 10 years of the NFF Riverside County Chapter

  • Congratulations to the parents, coaches, teachers and administrators for the important role you have played in the development of tonight’s honorees. And scholar-athletes, be sure to thank your parents and coaches tonight. As you notice the scholar-athletes that are being recognized, please keep in mind you are witnessing the future leaders of our community and nation.



(3-4 minutes)


  • The Buffet tables are set up in the lobby area. When the chapter members release your table, please exit out the door located in the back to my left where you entered the room. We will begin with the head table, followed by the scholar-athletes. Please wait for your table to be released. Enjoy your dinner.

  • (Stage note: crew will be at exit doors; TBA will release tables)




(5-6 minutes)


  • Personal Remarks

  • Encourage other coaches and athletic directors to join the NFF Riverside County board.

  • Please consider supporting the NFF Riverside Chapter with a donation. You can either place a donation in the envelope on the table or make a donation using a credit card with Carol Holm.

  • Please do not remove the centerpieces as we reuse them every year. However, you can order centerpieces on the website.

  • Introduce coaches in alphabetical order.

Recognize the coach of each of these scholar athletes. TBA and TBA will deliver a certificate of recognition to each coach. Please stand after I call your name and remain standing until everyone has been recognized.




Tony Barile


Kraig Broach


Patrick Blackburn

Palm Desert

DeChon Burns

Linfield Christian

Coley Candaele

Vista Murrieta

Bert Esposito

Paloma Valley

Vinny Fazio

Murrieta Valley

Pete Garza

Canyon Springs

Perry Jones


Richard Lee

Cathedral City

Jason McMains


Dan Murphy

Palm Springs

Anthony Peralta


Bill Powell

San Jacinto

Jeff Reitz


Robbie Robinson

Great Oak

Mike Sands

Temescal Canyon

Justin Schaeffer

Murrieta Mesa

Brad Schwab

Calvary Murrieta Christian

Jeff Steinberg


John Stockham


Ryan Tukua




  • Please add your own comments to thank the coaches for their important role.



TO AMATEUR FOOTBALL AWARD: John Jackson (1-2 minutes)


  • We now begin the awards portion of our banquet with the presentation of a very special honor. Each year the local chapters of the National Football Foundation may, at their discretion, award one or both of two nationally sanctioned awards to deserving individuals. One of these distinguished recognitions is for Outstanding Contribution to Amateur Football. This honor is not necessarily an annual award, but one based strictly on merit. It is intended to provide recognition to an individual whose efforts and activities have been in support of amateur football and the goals of the National Football Foundation.




(1-2 minutes)


  • Introduce Dr. Jonathan Greenberg:

Tonight we are honored to present the Outstanding Contribution to Amateur Football Award to Dr. Jonathan Greenberg, Superintendent Perris Unified School District

  • Ask Dr. Greenberg to come up to stage and present award


Need to add bio


ACCEPTANCE OF AWARD: Dr. Jonathan Greenberg


(2-3 minutes)



(1-2 minutes)



  • Introduce:

Tonight we are honored to present the Media Award to Pep Fernandez.


Ask Pep Fernandez to come up to stage and present award.






(2-3 minutes)




(2 minutes)


  • Introduce Will Smith

  • Bring Will to stage

  • We welcome Will Smith. Will is a returning NFF Riverside County Scholar-Athlete. He was honored in 2010 and at that time attended Notre Dame High School.

  • Will Smith was born January 13, 1992 in Riverside, Calif.

  • While playing for Notre Dame High School, Will was named

  • team and league most valuable player in football and basketball

  • team MVP in track

  • received all county honorable mention in football and basketball

  • After graduating from Notre Dame, Will attended Riverside Community College in Riverside.

  • During the football season, he helped the team to a perfect 11-0 record and a No. 5 national ranking by JC Gridwire.

  • Will finished the 2011 season second on the team with 36 solo tackles and 13 tackles for loss during his sophomore season. He recorded three interceptions and returned one 75-yards for a touchdown.

  • In 2012, Will transferred to Texas Tech. He finished his first season with:

  • A season high eight tackles (2 were solos), and tallied two quarterback hurries against Baylor at Cowboys Stadium

  • Made career debut with three tackles (all solo in season opener against Northwestern State

  • Collected three tackles (all solo) at No. 24 Oklahoma State

  • Made four tackles against Kansas

  • Posted six tackles (four solo) against No. 22 Texas

  • Tallied four tackles (all solo) at No. 3 Kansas State

  • Made six tackles (five solo) at No. 21 TCU, had one tackle (solo) at Iowa St.

  • Led the team with six tackles (three solo) at Texas State

  • In 2013, Will was the:

  • Holiday Bowl Defensive MVP

  • ESPN Big 12 All-Bowl team

  • All Big 12

    • Honorable Mention

    • Broadcasters All-Conference 1st team

  • Preseason

    • All Big 12 – 4th team – played in 13 games with 120 tackles (86 solo), and fumble return for a touchdown, 120 total tackles for a by a Red Raider since 2002, and 86 solo tackles, most by a Red Raider since 2002

    • Either led the team or tied for team lead in tackles in 9 of 13 games.

  • Led or tied for the team lead in tackles for the third consecutive game with six tackles with a sack and a quarterback hurry at Kansas

  • Became the first Red Raider to score a touchdown after picking up a fumble since 2011

  • Made his season debut against SMU where he made seven tackles (four solo) with 1.5 tackles for a loss of 10 yards on 1.5 sacks.

Add comment about Will graduating and planning what?



(5-8 minutes)




(2 minutes)


  • We’ve now come to the most important part of the evening. We are proud to present the twenty-two young men sitting here before you and to acknowledge their outstanding accomplishments in the classroom as well as on the football field. Throughout their high school careers these student athletes have demonstrated the highest level of character, academic and athletic performance, sportsmanship and leadership. It is fitting that each of these candidates be enshrined in the National Football Foundation College Hall of Fame as High School Scholar-Athletes.

  • The Scholar-Athletes will be brought up on stage in alphabetical order, and NFF Executive Board Member Paul Lopez and TBA will read a short bio of each recipient. When the scholar-athlete hears his name announced, please proceed on stage to be presented with a plaque and medallion commemorating this honor. Once you have received your award, you are to proceed off the stage and to the photography area for a picture before returning to your seat.

  • Following the conclusion of the banquet, we ask that all scholar-athletes report directly to the photography area for a group photo. Mr. Jack Scott of Visual Sports Network has generously donated his services for this event.

  • Every honoree will receive a complimentary individual and group photo. You may also order additional photos. I now invite Paul Lopez and TBA to the podium to present the 2013 National Football Foundation Riverside County Chapter High School Scholar-Athletes.


(Stage notes: John Jackson go to photo area for pictures with athletes as Paul/TBA take the podium.

Carol will cue the boys to get up as a table and get in line alphabetically stage left as Paul/TBA takes the podium.

As they read the individual bios, TBA will stand off-stage and send the recipients up as their names are called. He will assist by handing the awards to Bill Powell (plaque) and Bob Burt (medals) who will present on stage.

TBA will shake hands with recipients on stage and TBA will keep player on stage until Paul/TBA is finished with his bio. TBA will stand off stage and greet the recipient as he leaves the stage and directing him to the photography area. Jack Scott will send athlete over to TBA who will direct them to their seat.




(25-35 minutes)


  • Ask parents to stand at their table when their honoree is called.

  • Watch that previous scholar-athlete to exit stage before announcing next recipient.

  • Alphabetical order:

Paul will begin with Americano II followed by TBA with Baron II, and so on












(1 minute)





(2 minutes)






(1 minute)





(1-2 minutes)





(5-6 minutes)


( unveil Perpetual Plaque and then can be seated)











  1. Richard Americano II

  2. John Baron II

  3. Reginald Weston Brown

  4. Cody Cervantes

  5. Justin Dorsey

  6. Coltin Gerhart

  7. Matthew Hobby

  8. Kyle Kabeary

  9. Ryan Laverdiere

  10. Darion McCall

  11. P.J. Murrieta

  12. Ruben Meza

  13. Matt Palmer

  14. Jalen Rashan Pontious

  15. Derek Rack

  16. Tyan Smith

  17. Chance Spates

  18. Zachary Vasqez

  19. Eric Voss

  20. Kre' tien Webb

  21. Marcus Williams

  22. Jacob Zinda

    • One more time, would the scholar-athletes please rise. Ladies and gentleman, let’s hear it for your 2014 scholar-athletes!

    • To present the $500.00 Sponsor Scholar-Athlete Scholarship for 2014, please welcome Chapter TBA.

    • One of our Chapter’s most important priorities is to promote the continued education of a student-athlete following graduation from high school. To that end, the funding of scholarships to help honorees with tuition and other expenses associated with continuing education is a cornerstone of our organization. We are very grateful and fortunate to have the support and commitment of an amazing partner in this effort — the Soboba Band of Luiseno Indians. This is the ninth year they have sponsored the NFF. Because of this generosity, this evening we are able to award a scholarship in the amount of $500 to our most outstanding scholar-athlete as selected by our Chapter’s executive officers and board. The selection was made on the following criteria: A written essay, academic standing, athletic accomplishment; leadership, character, school and community activities and need.

    • Read the inscription on the check and present to the winner. (Eric Voss)

    • I am proud to announce that each one of the remaining twenty-one scholar-athletes here tonight will be awarded a scholarship in the amount of $250.

    • At the end of the banquet, a parent should go to TBA to receive the copy of the scholarship and instructions on receiving it.

    • Speaking on behalf of the 2014 NFF Scholar-Athletes, to accept and acknowledge this honor, is Eric Voss who has the distinction of holding the highest GPA among the twenty-two honorees.

    • Introduce and thank the members of the Soboba Band of Luiseno Indians who have joined us tonight. We wish to thank you again for your generosity and continued support to the Riverside County Chapter of the NFF.

    • Explain and Unveil the perpetual plaque, present to Soboba Council Members.

    • Final personal remarks

    • To learn more about us check out our website listed in your program.

    • Scholar-Athletes, you will find a proclamation in your gift bag from United State Congressman Ken Calvert. Congressman Calvert was unable to attend tonight as he is away doing the people’s business, but wanted us to pass his personal congratulations along with the proclamation certificates.

    • Let’s discuss: There is a self-addressed envelope and thank you card for Soboba. Please write a few notes and send it to Soboba within the next couple of days.

    • Thank John Jackson and present with gift

    • Personal remarks in closing

    • In closing, we would again like to thank each of the schools, superintendents, principals, athletic directors and coaches here tonight for your support. Let’s thank all sponsors who helped in funding the organization.

    • I also think we should show our appreciation to the NFF Riverside County Chapter Officers and Board Members, especially Banquet Chairperson Carol Holm, for doing such a great job organizing this event.

    • We need all scholar-athletes to report to the photography area at the conclusion of the banquet for a group photograph.

    • We hope you enjoyed yourselves and please drive home safely. On behalf of myself, and the NFF Riverside County Chapter, thanks for attending and good night!

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