ATLANTA (January 13, 2020) – As college football comes to a close, fans now turn their attention to basketball. With the 2019-20 season well underway, the Atlanta Tipoff Club, administrators of the Naismith Awards, announced a series of activations for the second half of the season, including the launch of a new basketball-focused podcast called “A Trophy Life.”
Launching on Wednesday, Jan. 15 at 11 a.m. ET, the show will be hosted by Bob Rathbun, the play-by-play voice of the Atlanta Hawks, and the first episode will feature Fran Fraschilla, ESPN college basketball analyst. Rathbun, a 40-year broadcaster from Fox Sports, Raycom and ESPN, will host the weekly segment and discuss the state of basketball, from high school to college to the pros with various guests.
“The launch of ‘A Trophy Life’ is just one of the many activations to look forward to during the second half of basketball season,” said Eric Oberman, executive director of the Atlanta Tipoff Club. “We’re excited to hear from some great broadcasters, former winners, coaches and celebrities discuss this year’s basketball season as it kicks into high-gear, leading up to the championship game in our home city of Atlanta.”
“A Trophy Life” will be available at ATrophyLife.BuzzSprout.com, on the Naismith and the Atlanta Tipoff Club websites and social pages and on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Google Playstore, SoundCloud and others. Fans can also download the podcast to listen to it on the go. Each week, guests will be revealed on the Naismith Trophy Twitter page, and fans can engage in the conversation using the #ATrophyLife.
In addition to the podcast, the Naismith Awards and its sponsors will have several activations for basketball fans. Citizen Watch Company, title sponsor of the men’s and women’s college player of year awards, will launch a fan sweepstakes to send one lucky grand prize winner to the 2020 Division I Championship semifinal and final games in Atlanta, as well at the Naismith Awards Brunch where the Citizen Naismith Trophy winner will be revealed. Fans can enter to win by visiting here between Jan. 15 and March 22 and completing an entry form; limit one entry per person. The winner will be chosen on March 23 and notified via email. Full terms and conditions available online.
New this season, Jersey Mike’s Subs, title sponsor of the Naismith High School Player of the Year and Coach of the Year awards, will honor two additional high school student-athletes through the Jersey Mike’s Naismith Courage Award. The award will recognize one boy’s and one girl’s high school basketball player who has consistently gone above and beyond throughout the basketball season and has demonstrated courage in their approach to the team, their high school, the game and their community. Coaches can nominate their athlete for the award and grand prize, by visiting here by Feb. 14.
Title sponsor of the Naismith Trophy for Men’s and Women’s College Coach of the Year, Werner Ladder, will be making four more stops on the second annual Werner Ladder Naismith Trophy Tour, after kicking off the campaign in November. The tour will stop at the schools of previous award winners, including Georgia Tech (Bobby Cremins, 1990), Kansas State (Bruce Smith, who won at Illinois in 2005), Kentucky (Tubby Smith, 2003, and John Calipari, 2015) and UConn (Geno Auriemma, 1995, 1997, 2000, 2002, 2008, 2009, 2016, 2017).
Additionally, the second half of the season will bring several awards announcements as the contenders for each of the Naismith Awards narrows, all leading up to the winners of the college awards being announced during the Division I Championship game weekend at the Naismith Awards Brunch, which will be held at the Chick-fil-A College Football Hall of Fame in Atlanta on Sunday, April 5 at 9:30 a.m. ET.
A schedule of upcoming announcements and links to the player of the year watch lists, which were announced earlier this season, can be found below:
- Tuesday, January 14:
- Jersey Mike’s Naismith Girls High School Player of the Year Midseason Team (Watch List)
- Thursday, January 16:
- Jersey Mike’s Naismith Boys High School Player of the Year Midseason Team (Watch List)
- Tuesday, January 21:
- Naismith Women’s College Defensive Player of the Year Midseason Team
- Thursday, January 23:
- Naismith Men’s College Defensive Player of the Year Midseason Team
- Tuesday, February 11:
- Citizen Naismith Trophy Women’s College Player of the Year Midseason Team (Watch List)
- Thursday, February 13:
- Citizen Naismith Trophy Men’s College Player of the Year Midseason Team (Watch List)
- Tuesday, February 18:
- Jersey Mike’s Naismith Girls High School Coach of the Year Finalists
- Wednesday, February 19:
- Werner Ladder Naismith Women’s College Coach of the Year Late-Season Watch List
- Thursday, February 20:
- Jersey Mike’s Naismith Boys High School Coach of the Year Finalists
- Friday, February 21:
- Werner Ladder Naismith Men’s College Coach of the Year Late-Season Watch List
The competition for each award will narrow even further with the winners of the high school awards being announced in March and the college award announcements in April. The Jersey Mike’s Naismith High School Boys and Girls Coach of the Year awards will be announced on March 9, and the Jersey Mike’s Naismith High School Girls and Boys Player of the Year honors will be publicized on March 10. The Naismith Women’s Defensive Player of the Year will be revealed on April 3, and on April 4, the Citizen Naismith Trophy for Women’s Player of the Year and Werner Ladder Naismith Trophy for Women’s Coach of the Year will be announced. The following day, on April 5, the Citizen Naismith Trophy for Men’s Player of the Year, the Naismith Defensive Player of the Year and the Werner Ladder Naismith Trophy for Men’s Coach of the Year will be awarded at the Naismith Awards Brunch.
ABOUT THE ATLANTA TIPOFF CLUB
Founded during the 1956-57 season, the Atlanta Tipoff Club is committed to promoting the game of basketball and recognizing the outstanding accomplishments of those who make the game so exciting. The Atlanta Tipoff Club administers the Naismith Awards, the most prestigious national honors in all of college and high school basketball. Named in honor of Dr. James Naismith, inventor of the game of basketball, the family of Naismith Awards annually recognizes the most outstanding men’s and women’s college and high school basketball players and coaches. Other Naismith Awards are presented to the men’s and women’s college basketball defensive players of the year, as well as lifetime achievement awards to basketball officials and outstanding contributors to the game. UCLA’s Lew Alcindor received the first Citizen Naismith Trophy in 1969, while the late Anne Donovan (Old Dominion) was the inaugural women’s recipient in 1983. Corporate partners of the Naismith Awards include Citizen Watch Company, Jersey Mike’s and Werner Ladder.
Jackson Spalding for the Atlanta Tipoff Club