Bob Casciola is the former president of the National Football Foundation and College Hall of Fame, a 14-year tenure in which he oversaw the Play It Smart program and the implementation of the NFL/NFF Coaching Academy, which annually educates more than 10,000 youth coaches. Bob played at Princeton University for Hall of Fame coaches Charley Caldwell and Dick Colman. A member of that Hall of Fame himself, Bob had previously served as head coach both of Princeton University and the University of Connecticut and served for 3 years as assistant coach to Hall of Fame head coach Bob Blackman at Dartmouth, in addition to a stint broadcasting college football games. In 2004, the NFF honored Bob with its Distinguished American Award, previously given to Vince Lombardi and Pete Rozelle. Bob Casciola currently lives in the Scottsdale, Arizona area.So what is 1st and Forever about? From the Amazon page for the book, which will be available in hardcover on Aug. 28:
Part memoir and part homage to the game he loves, former National Football Foundation president Bob Casciola mounts a persuasive case in support of football’s relevance to life.
Against a backdrop of increasing pressures and criticism of the game itself, 1st and Forever takes a stand to contend that football is vital by showcasing the inner character of those who’ve played the game. From European refugees who carved out their legacies between yard markers, to life-changing humanitarians inspired by their on-field experiences, to Hall of Fame players and coaches whose positive influence has extended far beyond the close of their careers, 1st and Forever stitches a tale of lives bettered, defined, and enriched by a sport that is like no other.
As a long-time coach and former president of the National Football Foundation, Bob Casciola has served the game he loves for decades. In 1st and Forever, he takes that service to a new level by laying out his case for why, and how, football must be saved. Through a series of inspiring tales of his own experiences and interactions with many of those with whom he’s crossed paths, Bob makes a case that the future for football can be as bright as its past.
1st and Forever illuminates that the experience of the game itself is too positive and beneficial to cast aside – especially for today’s youth, who deserve the same opportunity to shine on the field as well as off.Here is some advanced praise for 1st and Forever:
“Football is all American. It always has been and always will be. Yet, nobody has their heads in the sand, starting with Bob Casciola. His lessons learned on all levels provide a gateway to lessons to be learned in the future on all levels. 1st and Forever is both a feel good and feel enlightened read for football fans present and future.”
- Chris Berman, ESPN
“The current concussion crisis that is plaguing football is a concern by all who love and appreciate the game. Concerned that the issue could prevent many young people from benefiting from the gridiron experience, Bob Casciola, one of football’s greatest ambassadors, who played and served as a coach and an administrator, has skillfully penned for us 1st and Forever, answering the question as to why football must be preserved. Thanks Bob!! This needed to be done.”Vince Dooley, College Football Hall of Fame coach
“Bob Casciola’s words resonate in these pages as football is under siege in this country. Great men have played this game, and if we’re not careful an entire generation of greatness may never see the gridiron. Understanding how to protect the game, but also grow the game is critical and his genuine approach here is heartwarming and effective.”
Tim Brando, Fox Sports
“1st and Forever is just what the doctor ordered for football. A story about winners both on the field and off, this book can make anyone fall in love with the game and make diehards love it even more. Like me, Bob Casciola has spent a lifetime around the gridiron and no one is more qualified to paint a picture that casts football in the proper light to counter the shadows that have fallen across the hash marks. Sterling in its approach, convincing in its arguments, and timely in its message, 1st and Forever etches a portrait of a game that has its best days still ahead of it.”
Grant Teaff, College Football Hall of Fame Coach and Executive Director Emeritus of the American Football Coaches Association
“Football teaches those involved life skills, the importance of hard work and provides opportunities for the future. It unites people, teams, families, and towns. Football fans all come together from different walks of life to cheer for their team and a common purpose bigger than themselves. 1st and Forever is about the game of football and its importance to America.”
Jack Lengyel, former Cornell assistant coach, Marshall University head coach and Director of Athletics, U.S. Naval Academy
•Well, this from FootballScoop is certainly interesting:
A new study, led by a professor at Northwestern’s Feinberg School of Medicine, has found that the concussion obsession that has surrounded football for the past decade or so may soon have some company from other sports, and some of those sports may surprise you.
According to the study that was presented at an annual conference for orthopedic surgeons, girl’s soccer has the highest per capita rate of concussion among high school sports, and they hold the spot by a pretty significant amount.Find the full story HERE.
Photo is courtesy of a loyal BGA reader who had a chance to see Dartmouth alum Kyle Hendricks' best performance of the year for the Chicago Cubs against the San Francisco Giants. Hendricks surrendered just five hits and struck out a season-high eight in 8 1/3 innings but did not get the decision. Read about his "bounce back" performance HERE.
That's it for now folks. Our flight to Denver will be boarding in a bit. Remember, there could be limited BGA Daily postings over the next two weeks.