Hoge named to USA Football Board

USA FOOTBALL NAMES MERRIL HOGE TO BOARD OF DIRECTORS

USA Football, the sport's national governing body on youth and amateur levels, announced today that former NFL running back MERRIL HOGEhas joined the independent non-profit's board of directors. USA Football conducts more than 80 football events annually across the country for its members in all 50 states, offering education for coaches and game officials, skill development for players and resources for youth football league commissioners.

Hoge, who played for the Pittsburgh Steelers (1987-93) and Chicago Bears (1994) will be featured in USA Football's certified coaching education program at usafootball.com, which has helped train thousands of youth coaches since its 2007 inception. The course will be bolstered with new content this spring to include concussion awareness and education, equipment fitting and hydration videos. Hoge also will serve as a USA Football volunteer spokesperson.

Raised in Pocatello, Idaho, and a graduate of Idaho State University, Hoge is an NFL analyst for ESPN and has served as a volunteer youth football coach for the past five seasons.

USA Football's Board of Directors:

Ø Ray Anderson, National Football League

Ø Roger Goodell, National Football League

Ø Jason Belser, NFL Players Association

Ø Merril Hoge,* *NFL Alumni

Ø Joe Browne, National Football League

Ø Mark Meana, Fairfax County (Va.) Youth Football League

Ø Jon Butler, Pop Warner Little Scholars

Ø Brian Mitchell, NFL Alumni

Ø Tom Cove, Sporting Goods Manufacturers Assoc.

Ø Carl Peterson, USA Football Chairman

Ø Carl Francis, NFL Players Association

Ø DeMaurice Smith, NFL Players Association

Ø Alexia Gallagher, National Football League

Ø Grant Teaff, American Football Coaches Association

Ø Bob Gardner, National Federation of State H.S. Assns.

Ø Deborah A. Yow, University of Maryland

Drafted by the Pittsburgh Steelers in 1987, Hoge led the team in rushing and receiving in four of his first five seasons. Hoge and Pro Football Hall of Fame running back Franco Harris are the only two Steelers to rush for more than 100 yards in back-to-back playoff games. An All-Madden Team selection in 1989, Hoge retired in 1994 as a member of the Chicago Bears. At the time of his retirement, Hoge had the longest consecutive playing streak in the NFL.

"I'm excited to join USA Football's board of directors," Hoge said. "This game holds an abundance of values that are so important for our youngsters. Responsibility, teamwork, discipline, sacrifice – no sport instills these values like football. Playing for excellent coaches, including Pro Football Hall of Famer Chuck Noll, I know that the best coaches are the best teachers and USA Football understands this, their resources and programs prove it. I look forward to making meaningful contributions as a member of this impressive board."

"We're proud to have Merril join our board of directors," said USA Football Executive Director SCOTT HALLENBECK. "As a player and a person, Merril's 'find a way' attitude has led him to great success in everything he does. His knowledge and commitment to the sport will make him a valuable contributor to USA Football and to the vast youth and amateur football community we serve."

About USA FootballUSA Football, the sport's national governing body on youth and amateur levels, hosts more than 80 football training events annually offering education for coaches and game officials, skill development for players and resources for youth football league commissioners. The independent non-profit is the official youth football development partner of the NFL Players Association, the NFL, and its 32 teams. USA Football manages U.S. national teams within the sport for international competition and provides $1 million annually in equipment grants and subsidizes youth league volunteer background checks. Endowed by the NFL and NFLPA in 2002 through the NFL Youth Football Fund, USA Football is chaired by former NFL team executive Carl Peterson.

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