Minneapolis (November 14, 2019) – The six-member 2019 class of the Star Tribune Minnesota Sports Hall of Fame will be featured as part of the 3rd annual Minnesota Sports Awards on Dec. 11. The awards gala, presented by Sports Minneapolis, will take place at the Renaissance Minneapolis Hotel, The Depot and showcase top athletes and coaches from around the state. In addition, the Minnesota Sports Moment of the Year will be revealed, and former Minnesota Vikings Chief Operating Officer Kevin Warren will be honored with the inaugural Trailblazer Award. The public is welcome to attend and tickets are on sale now.
Sports Minneapolis and Star Tribune Media Co. are partnering to induct six legends into the Star Tribune Minnesota Sports Hall of Fame. The Hall of Fame includes more than 70 inductees, and this year’s honorees are:
- John Gagliardi – For 60 years, he was the head coach of the Saint John’s University football team. During that time, he became the all-time winningest college football coach. Gagliardi ended his coaching career with a 489-138-11 (.775) record and was the first active head coach inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame.
- Willard Ikola – A member of three U.S. national teams and a silver medalist at the 1956 Winter Olympics, Ikola is best known for his amazing coaching record of 600-140-38 (.796) and winning eight state high school tournament titles at Edina High School.
- Randall McDaniel – Regarded as one of the finest offensive linemen in NFL history, McDaniel was named to the NFL’s All-Decade Team of the 1990s and was enshrined in the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2009. His career included a streak of 202 consecutive starts and 12 straight Pro Bowl berths.
- Randy Moss – A 2018 inductee into the Pro Football Hall of Fame, Moss played 14 seasons in the NFL and ended his career with 982 receptions for 15,292 yards and 156 touchdowns. He received first-team All-Pro honors four times and was named to the NFL All-Decade Team of the 2000s.
- John Randle – Signed as an undrafted free agent with the Minnesota Vikings in 1990, Randle became one of the NFL’s most dominant pass rushers. He amassed 137.5 sacks during his 14-year career and was enshrined in the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2010.
- Lindsay Whalen – One of the top basketball players in Minnesota history, the Hutchinson native led the Gopher women’s team to its first-ever Final Four in 2004. She’s the winningest player in WNBA history, helped the Minnesota Lynx win four WNBA titles and won two Olympic gold medals.
On Dec. 11, Sports Minneapolis will also present its first-ever Trailblazer Award. Former Minnesota Vikings Chief Operating Officer and incoming Big Ten Commissioner Kevin Warren will be honored as the inaugural recipient.
In addition, based on nominations from sports fans from around the state, the winner of the Minnesota Sports Moment of the Year for the 2018-19 season will be announced. Finalists include:
- Henning boys’ basketball wins state championship
- Minnesota Duluth captures second straight NCAA men’s hockey title
- Minnesota Twins set MLB home run record
- Saint John’s upsets St. Thomas in annual football rivalry game
The 2019 Minnesota Sports Awards recognize the outstanding sports achievements and community involvement of individuals during the 2018-19 season, many of whom will be on hand for the evening’s awards ceremony*. Created to shine a spotlight on the impact of sports throughout the state, awards will be presented in the following categories:
- High School Athletes of the Year (Female/Male)
- Collegiate Athletes of the Year (Female/Male)
- Professional Athlete of the Year – presented by FOX Sports North
- Coach of the Year
- Courage Award – presented by TRIA
- Trailblazer Award
- Minnesota Sports Moment of the Year
The public is invited to attend this event which includes a silent auction, dinner and an entertaining awards ceremony featuring athletes, coaches and high-profile Minnesota sports celebrities. Full details can be found here and tickets may be purchased online. A portion of the proceeds from the gala event will benefit the United Heroes League.
The 2019 Minnesota Sports Awards, presented by Sports Minneapolis, will be carried live by FOX Sports North across multiple digital platforms and rebroadcast at a later date.
* Appearances by professional athletes may be subject to change.
ABOUT SPORTS MINNEAPOLIS
Sports Minneapolis leads the region in bidding, winning and executing major professional and amateur sporting events that impact the city of Minneapolis and beyond. Sports Minneapolis, a division within Meet Minneapolis, has played a major role in securing events such as the Super Bowl, NCAA Men’s Final Four, Major League Baseball All-Star Game, USA Girls’ Jr. Volleyball, CONCACAF Gold Cup soccer, X Games and more. Amateur and professional sports events increase visitor spending and tax revenue that benefits the local community.
Sports Minneapolis and its partners, including the University of Minnesota, have secured upcoming NCAA championships and major events, such as the 2020 Division I Wrestling Championships, the 2021 Division I Men’s Gymnastics Championships, and the 2021 Division I Men’s Basketball Regional. In addition, Sports Minneapolis and its partners will be the local organizing committee for the 2022 NCAA Division I Women’s Basketball Final Four.
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Watch: Sports Minneapolis, Meet Minneapolis – Impact: Tourism with Purpose
Kevin Kurtt, Public Relations and Communication Manager, 612-767-8118, email@example.com
Or email MeetMinneapolisPR@Minneapolis.org