May 7, 2012
DALLAS (FWAA) - The Football Writers Association of America has announced its third "Super 11" field of sports information departments which were deemed the best in the NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision during the 2011 season.
Michigan State, Auburn, Georgia, Georgia Tech, Northern Illinois, Oklahoma, San Diego State, Southern California, Syracuse, Utah State and Western Kentucky are the winners. For a third straight season, Georgia and USC have been chosen for the elite group of sports information departments, as well as the only repeaters from 2010.
Since the FWAA's inception in 1941, one of the organization's charges is to provide better working conditions for writers across the country. Over the years, the FWAA has given out press box commendations to deserving schools and has conducted ratings of sports information departments.
"There are many truly outstanding sports information departments across college football," said Tim Griffin, the FWAA's 2010 president and chairman of the Super 11 selection committee for a third straight season. "But we at the FWAA felt it was very important to honor those we thought were the best of the best - including some we've honored in our two previous years who are consistently exemplary above and beyond the call of duty."
"It is our plan to continue this program over the years to continue honoring those outstanding departments which understand the unique demands of our jobs and continually do what they can to try and help us on a consistent basis."
Criteria in determining the winners not only included how press boxes/operations were run, but the quality and timeliness of information provided, the amount of information presented and appropriately updated on websites, personal responsiveness to media inquires as well as the accessibility of players, head and assistant coaches. The ratings also took into consideration the departments that went the extra mile in servicing the media.
The Super 11 Committee received input from other FWAA members covering college football during a period from Feb. 1, 2011 through Jan. 31, 2012.
"These awards show which sports information departments - as judged by a veteran group of FWAA writers - service the media in the best way for a particular year," said FWAA executive director Steve Richardson. "We salute these schools and the ones in the past who have been selected to this group."
In January 2009, at its board meeting, the FWAA formed the first Super 11 Committee. The concept is supported by the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA), many of whom are members of the FWAA.
The Football Writers Association of America, a non-profit organization founded in 1941, consists of more than 1,200 men and women across North America who cover college football for a living. The membership includes journalists, broadcasters and publicists, as well as key executives in all the areas that involve the game. The FWAA works to govern areas that include gameday operations, major awards, a national poll and its annual All-America team.