Legendary quarterback Peyton Manning, the NFL’s only five-time Most Valuable Player and a 14-time Pro Bowl selection, will be the guest of honor at The Times’ third annual Sports Awards celebrating top high school athletes, set for May.
Hundreds of the best student-athletes in the area will earn invitations to the 2017 Sports Awards May 15 at the Shreveport Convention Center.
The two-hour program includes a buffet, a question-and-answer session with Manning, 30 Athlete of the Year awards in various sports and at least seven major awards, including the Male and Female Athlete of the Year.
“We are absolutely thrilled to bring Peyton Manning to Shreveport and Bossier City,” said Judi Terzotis, president of The Times. “His work ethic, passion and strong family values are a perfect alignment with our talented prep athletes. Receiving an award from Peyton Manning for their exceptional performance on stage in front of their family, peers and coaches will be a special memory for our athletes. Sponsorships, table sales and individual tickets will go fast.”
The title sponsor for this year’s event is Griggs Enterprise, owner of local McDonald’s restaurants. AEP Swepco is also helping to sponsor this year’s event.
“McDonald’s is proud to sponsor this event celebrating our area’s best high school athletes,” said Roy Griggs, owner of Griggs Enterprises-McDonald’s. “We look forward to seeing the young athletes.”
Tickets for the event are $75 and may be purchased at sportsawards.shreveporttimes.com. For sponsorship information, please contact Rick Rose at email@example.com or (318) 453-8261.
The Times’ first two Sports Awards events to celebrate the region’s best prep athletes have been sellouts. Jackie Joyner-Kersee served as the speaker for the inaugural gala; Saints quarterback Drew Brees had the honor at his year’s event and drew a crowd of 1,400.
Every athlete or coach to appear on an All-City, All-Area or All-Region team for the 2016-17 season will earn an invitation and free entry to the 2017 Sports Awards.
Manning earned his place among the greatest quarterbacks in league history as a leader in nearly every statistical passing category.
During the 2015/2016 season, Manning led the Denver Broncos to a 24-10 win over the Carolina Panthers in Super Bowl 50, making him the first starting quarterback in NFL history to win a Super Bowl with two different teams.
Manning entered the NFL in 1998 with the Indianapolis Colts as the first overall draft pick. He amassed the most career touchdown passes in league history in addition to ranking first all-time in wins by a starting quarterback (200), completions and passing yards.
Named a first-team All-Pro selection by the Associated Press on seven occasions, Manning owns more postseason berths and 300-yard passing games than any quarterback in NFL history. A native of New Orleans, he was named the No. 1 greatest athlete to hail from the state of Louisiana by The Times-Picayune.
In 2013, Manning was named Sportsman of the Year by Sports Illustrated. In his first year with the Broncos in 2012—and after missing the entire 2011 campaign with a neck injury—Manning finished as the Associated Press NFL Comeback Player of the Year and runner-up for the league’s MVP.
During his first 14 NFL seasons with the Colts, Manning set club records in nearly every career passing category. He led the franchise to its first World Championship in 36 years during the 2006 season, earning MVP honors in the Colts’ 29-17 win over the Chicago Bears in Super Bowl XLI.
During his time at the University of Tennessee, Manning epitomized the term “student-athlete.” He claimed 43 records at the school, conference and national levels while graduating with Phi Beta Kappa honors.
He led Tennessee to an SEC Championship as a senior in 1997 and earned consensus All-America honors. Following his senior season, Manning was honored with the Sullivan Award for the nation’s top amateur athlete based on character, leadership, athletic ability and the ideals of amateurism.
Manning attended Isidore Newman High School in New Orleans, where he was named Gatorade Circle of Champions National Player of the Year and Columbus (Ohio) Touchdown Club National Offensive Player of the Year as a senior.
For his actions off the field, Manning was honored as the recipient of the Byron “Whizzer” White Humanitarian Award and the NFL’s Walter Payton Man of the Year in 2005 as well as the Bart Starr Award in 2015.
Manning serves as a member of the American Red Cross National Celebrity Cabinet and The Pat Summit Foundation Advisory Board. He and his wife, Ashley, established the PeyBack Foundation in 1999 to promote the future success of disadvantaged youth by assisting programs that provide leadership and growth opportunities for children at risk.
The PeyBack Foundation has provided more than $12 million of impact to at-risk youth through its grants and programs since its inception.
Manning continues to maintain a strong relationship with St. Vincent’s Children’s Hospital (Indianapolis), which in 2007 was renamed the “Peyton Manning Children’s Hospital at St. Vincent.”
Manning’s father, Archie, was an All-American at the University of Mississippi in 1969 and 1970 and had a 14-year playing career in the NFL with New Orleans (1971-82), Houston (1982-83) and Minnesota (1983-84). His brother, Eli, also attended Ole Miss and was named the MVP of Super Bowls XLII and XLVI with the New York Giants.
Peyton Williams Manning was born on March 24, 1976, in New Orleans. He and Ashley have twins—a boy and a girl, Marshall Williams and Mosley Thompson.
IF YOU GO
The Times 2017 Sports Awards
May 15, 2017
Shreveport Convention Center
Special guest: Peyton Manning