WMU News

Darnell recognized for service to Kalamazoo community

Feb. 1, 2003

KALAMAZOO -- For the second consecutive year, Western Michigan University's head football coach Gary Darnell has been honored for his community service and coaching accomplishments.

Darnell was one of four finalists for the State Farm Eddie Robinson Coach of Distinction Award, presented late last year to Miami coach Larry Coker. The award honors coaches who serve as role models to their players and are active in their communities. It is named for Grambling State University's legendary head coach, who racked up 408 victories over 57 seasons, while at the same time molding men of good character.

Under Darnell's direction, the WMU football team assisted the Kalamazoo Valley Chapter of Habitat for Humanity last summer, spending three months renovating a vacant house. Darnell also has been active with the American Diabetes Association and the Boys & Girls Club of Greater Kalamazoo. He and his players have taken part in mentoring programs for at-risk youth and conducted football camps and autograph sessions to benefit WMU's Care About Kids program.

Media contact: Daniel Jankowski, 269 387-4138, daniel.jankowski@wmich.edu

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