Julius Andre Maurice Jones is a former American football running back in the National Football League for the Dallas Cowboys, Seattle Seahawks and New Orleans Saints. He played college football at the University of Notre Dame. Jones was born in Virginia, his mother, worked the graveyard shift in a Virginia coal mine for nearly 20 years while raising seven children, including his big brother Thomas Jones. While in Appalachia, his father encouraged the children to learn five new words per day, made them read the front page of the newspaper, before they could read the sports section. Jones credits his parents with instilling the ambition and strong work ethic that he is known for in professional football, he attended Powell Valley High School, where he was a letterman in football and track. In football, as a senior he registered 2,564 yards and 36 touchdowns, earning honorable-mention USA Today All-American honors, he contributed to his school winning 28 straight games and the Virginia Group A-Division II state title in 1997 and 1998, while being named the Virginia Group A Offensive Player of the Year in both years.
He finished his high school career with 614 carries for 86 touchdowns. He played safety and had 10 career interceptions. Jones played college football at the University of Notre Dame from 1999–2001 and 2003; as a freshman, he was a backup, playing on special teams, while leading the team in both kickoff and punt return yardage, he recorded 146-rushing yards and one touchdown against Navy. As a sophomore, he was a part of a three back rotation that included Tony Fisher and Terrance Howard, which limited him to only three 100 rushing yards games. In 2002, he was suspended from the team because of academic reasons. In 2003, although he began the season as a backup to Ryan Grant, he became the starter after the fifth game when he set a single-game school record for rushing yards against the University of Pittsburgh, he would have three 200-yard rushing performances, another school record and had one of the best single seasons by an Irish running back. He posted 229 carries for 10 touchdowns, he finished his college career as one of only four running backs in school history to rush for over 3,000 yards.
He set school records for kickoff return yards, combined kick return yards and all-purpose yards. After the NFL's All-Time leading rusher Emmitt Smith departed to the Arizona Cardinals, the Dallas Cowboys were looking to fix a disappointing running attack led by Troy Hambrick, with the selection of a potential franchise running back. In the 2004 NFL Draft they found themselves with the opportunity to draft Steven Jackson, the highest ranked running back, that fell because of concerns over a knee injury. Instead, the team felt they could select a comparable running back in the draft and chose to trade their first round pick to the Buffalo Bills for a future 2005 first round pick who the Cowboys would use on defensive end Marcus Spears. Jones was the back selected by the team in the second round of the 2004 NFL Draft. At the start of the season with a bruised rib, Jones fractured his scapula bone in a win versus the Cleveland Browns early in week two and the team was forced to depend on veteran free agent acquisition Eddie George during his absence.
Jones was healthy enough to play midway through the season and despite in a losing effort, he gained 80 yards on a stingy Baltimore Ravens defense led by Pro Bowl linebacker Ray Lewis. A week on a nationally televised Thanksgiving stage against his older brother Thomas and the Chicago Bears, Julius won "player of the game" honors when he rushed for 150 yards and two touchdowns; as a result, Jones was the second Dallas Cowboy chosen for FOX's annual "Galloping Gobbler" trophy awarded every Thanksgiving Day. This honor was bestowed upon running back Emmitt Smith in 2002 and awarded to quarterback Tony Romo in 2006; as the season came to a close, Jones looked impressive as he rushed for over 800 yards in the 8 remaining regular season games. The future looked promising and it appeared as if the team had found their successor to Smith. Jones was one of the few bright spots in a dismal 6-10 season. Jones made a confident goal of reaching 1,700 yards and 20 touchdowns. Against the Philadelphia Eagles in week 5, Julius rushed for 72 yards in the first half, but suffered a high ankle sprain that bothered him the entire season and was forced to sit out for 3 games.
For the second straight year, Jones was considered to be injury prone and unable to carry the load of a franchise back. Rookie running back Marion Barber III turned in several strong performances in Julius' absence creating a running back controversy. Against the Detroit Lions Jones had rushed for 92 yards, but on 1st and goal from the 1-yard line, he was stopped 3 consecutive times. Against the Carolina Panthers, Jones once again demonstrated his play-making ability when rushed for two touchdowns and 194 yards. Former Cowboys quarterback and now Fox Network commentator Troy Aikman, commented on Jones' speed burst and agility, something he had not seen since Julius' rookie season in 2004; the Cowboys finished the season with an uninspiring loss the next week to the St. Louis Rams at Texas Stadium. At a record of 9-7, Dallas missed the playoffs for the 2nd consecutive year and as if to signify the entire season, Jones came just 7 yards short of his first 1,000 yard season. Jones' only goal this time was to stay healthy for a full season.
After a strong start in which he gained 494 yards over the first five games, Jones saw his playing time decrease near th
Pro Football Hall of Fame
The Pro Football Hall of Fame is the hall of fame for professional American football, located in Canton, Ohio. Opened in 1963, the Hall of Fame enshrines exceptional figures in the sport of professional football, including players, franchise owners, front-office personnel all of whom made their primary contributions to the game in the National Football League; the Hall of Fame's Mission is to "Honor the Heroes of the Game, Preserve its History, Promote its Values & Celebrate Excellence EVERYWHERE." The Hall of Fame class of 2019 were selected into the Pro Football Hall of Fame by a 48-member selection committee and announced on February 2, 2019. Including the 2019 class, there are now a total of 326 members of the Hall of Fame; the community of Canton, Ohio lobbied the NFL to have the Hall of Fame built in their city for two reasons: first, the NFL was founded in Canton in 1920. Groundbreaking for the building was held on August 11, 1962; the original building contained just two rooms, 19,000 square feet of interior space.
In April 1970, ground was broken for the first of many expansions. This first expansion cost $620,000, was completed in May 1971; the size was increased to 34,000 square feet by adding another room. The pro shop opened with this expansion; this was an important milestone for the Pro Football Hall of Fame, as yearly attendance passed the 200,000 mark for the first time. This was at least in some part due to the increase in popularity of professional football caused by the advent of the American Football League and its success in the final two AFL-NFL World Championship games. In November 1977, work began on another expansion project, costing US$1,200,000, it was completed in November 1978, enlarging the gift shop and research library, while doubling the size of the theater. The total size of the hall was now more than 2.5 times the original size. The building remained unchanged until July 1993; the Hall announced yet another expansion, costing US$9,200,000, adding a fifth room. This expansion was completed in October 1995.
The building's size was increased to 82,307 square feet. The most notable addition was the GameDay Stadium, which shows an NFL Films production on a 20-foot by 42-foot Cinemascope screen. In 2013, the Hall of Fame completed renovation today; the Hall of Fame consists of 118,000 square feet. An $800 million expansion project, Johnson Controls Hall of Fame Village, is underway and will be completed to coincide with the NFL's Centennial in 2020. Dick McCann Dick Gallagher Pete Elliott John Bankert Steve Perry David Baker Through 2018, all players in the hall except one, played some part of their professional career in the NFL. Though several Hall of Famers have had AFL, Canadian Football League, World Football League, United States Football League, Arena Football League and/or Indoor Football League experience, there is a division of the Hall devoted to alternative leagues such as this, to this point no players have made the Hall without having made significant contributions to either the NFL, AFL or All-America Football Conference.
For CFL stars, there is a parallel Canadian Football Hall of Fame. The Chicago Bears have the most Hall of Famers among the league's franchises with either 34 or 28 enshrinees depending on whether you count players that only played a small portion of their careers with the team. Enshrinees are selected by a 48-person committee made up of media members known as the Selection Committee; each city that has a current NFL team sends one representative from the local media to the committee. A city with more than one franchise sends a representative for each franchise. There are 15 at-large delegates including one representative from the Pro Football Writers Association. Except for the PFWA representative, appointed to a two-year term, all other appointments are open-ended and terminated only by death, retirement, or resignation. To be eligible for the nominating process, a player or coach must have been retired for at least five years. Any other contributor such as a team owner or executive can be voted in at any time.
Fans may nominate any player, coach or contributor by writing to the Pro Football Hall of Fame via letter or email. The Selection Committee is polled three times by mail to narrow the list to 25 semifinalists: once in March, once in September, once in October. In November, the committee selects 15 finalists by mail balloting. A Seniors and Contributors Committee, subcommittees of the overall Selection Committee, nominate Seniors and Contributors; the Seniors Committee and Contributors Committee add two or one finalist on alternating years which makes a final ballot of 18 finalists under consideration by
The Pro Bowl is the all-star game of the National Football League. From the merger with the rival American Football League in 1970 up through 2013 and since 2017, it is called the AFC–NFC Pro Bowl, matching the top players in the American Football Conference against those in the National Football Conference. From 2014 through 2016, the NFL experimented with an unconferenced format, where the teams were selected by two honorary team captains, instead of selecting players from each conference; the players were picked in a televised "schoolyard pick" prior to the game. Unlike most major sports leagues, which hold their all-star games midway through their regular seasons, the Pro Bowl is played around the end of the NFL season; the first official Pro Bowl was played in January 1951, three weeks after the 1950 NFL Championship Game. Between 1970 and 2009, the Pro Bowl was held the weekend after the Super Bowl. Since 2010, it has been played the weekend before the Super Bowl. Players from the two teams competing in the Super Bowl do not participate.
For years, the game has suffered from lack of interest due to perceived low quality, with observers and commentators expressing their disfavor with it in its current state. It draws lower TV ratings than regular season NFL games, although the game draws similar ratings to other major all-star games, such as the Major League Baseball All-Star Game. However, the biggest concern of teams is to avoid injuries to the star players; the Associated Press wrote that players in the 2012 game were "hitting each other as though they were having a pillow fight". Between 1980 and 2016, the game was played at Aloha Stadium in Hawaii except for two years. On June 1, 2016, the NFL announced that they reached a multi-year deal to move the game to Orlando, Florida as part of the league's ongoing efforts to make the game more relevant; the first "Pro All-Star Game", featuring the all-stars of the 1938 season, was played on January 15, 1939 at Wrigley Field in Los Angeles. The NFL All-Star Game was played again in Los Angeles in 1940 and in New York and Philadelphia in 1941 and 1942 respectively.
Although planned as an annual contest, the all-star game was discontinued after 1942 because of travel restrictions put in place during World War II. During the first five all-star games, an all-star team would face that year's league champion; the league champion won the first four games before the all-stars were victorious in the final game of this early series. The concept of an all-star game was not revived until June 1950, when the newly christened "Pro Bowl" was approved; the game was sponsored by the Los Angeles Publishers Association. It was decided that the game would feature all-star teams from each of the league's two conferences rather than the league champion versus all-star format, used previously; this was done to avoid confusion with the Chicago College All-Star Game, an annual game which featured the league champion against a collegiate all-star team. The teams would be led by the coach of each of the conference champions. Prior to the Pro Bowl, following the 1949 season, the All-America Football Conference, which contributed three teams to the NFL in a partial merger in 1950, held its own all-star game, the Shamrock Bowl.
The first 21 games of the series were played in Los Angeles. The site of the game was changed annually for each of the next seven years before the game was moved to Aloha Stadium in Halawa, Hawaii for 30 straight seasons from 1980 through 2009; the 2010 Pro Bowl was played at Sun Life Stadium, the home stadium of the Miami Dolphins and host site of Super Bowl XLIV, on January 31, the first time that the Pro Bowl was held before the championship game. With the new rule being that the conference teams do not include players from the teams that will be playing in the Super Bowl, the Pro Bowl returned to Hawaii in 2011 but was again held during the week before the Super Bowl, where it remained for three more years; the 2012 game was met with criticism from fans and sports writers for the lack of quality play by the players. On October 24, 2012, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell had second thoughts about the Pro Bowl, telling a Sirius XM show that if the players did not play more competitively, he was "not inclined to play it anymore".
During the ensuing off-season, the NFL Players Association lobbied to keep the Pro Bowl, negotiated several rule changes to be implemented for the 2014 game. Among them, the teams will no longer be AFC vs. NFC, instead be selected by captains in a fantasy draft. For the 2014 game, Jerry Rice and Deion Sanders were chosen as alumni captains, while their captains were Drew Brees and Robert Quinn, along with Jamaal Charles and J. J. Watt. On April 9, 2014, the NFL announced that the 2015 Pro Bowl would be played the week before the Super Bowl at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Arizona on January 25, 2015; the game returned to Hawaii in 2016, the "unconferenced" format was its last. For 2017, the league considered hosting the game at Maracanã Stadium in Rio de Janeiro, which if approved would be the first time the game had been hosted outside the United States; the NFL is considering future Pro Bowls in Mexico and Germany. The NFL hopes that by leveraging international markets with the star power of Pro Bowls, international pop
The Arizona Cardinals are a professional American football franchise based in the Phoenix metropolitan area. The Cardinals compete in the National Football League as a member of the league's National Football Conference West division; the Cardinals were founded as the Morgan Athletic Club in 1898, are the oldest continuously run professional football team in the United States. The Cardinals play their home games at State Farm Stadium, which opened in 2006 and is located in the northwestern suburb of Glendale; the team was established in Chicago in 1898 as an amateur football team and joined the NFL as a charter member on September 17, 1920. Along with the Chicago Bears, the club is one of two NFL charter member franchises still in operation since the league's founding; the club moved to St. Louis in 1960 and played in that city through 1987. Before the 1988 season, the team moved west to Tempe, Arizona, a college suburb east of Phoenix, played their home games for the next 18 seasons at Sun Devil Stadium on the campus of Arizona State University.
In 2006, the club moved to their current home field in Glendale, although the team's executive offices and training facility remain in Tempe. The franchise has won two NFL championships, both; the first occurred in 1925, but is the subject of controversy, with supporters of the Pottsville Maroons believing that Pottsville should have won the title. Their second title, the first to be won in a championship game, came in 1947, nearly two decades before the first Super Bowl, they returned to the title game to defend in 1948, but lost the rematch 7–0 in a snowstorm in Philadelphia. Since winning the championship in 1947, the team suffered many losing seasons, holds the longest active championship drought of North American sports at 70 consecutive seasons after Major League Baseball's Chicago Cubs ended their 108 year drought in 2016. In 2012 the Cardinals became the first NFL franchise to lose 700 games since its inception; the franchise's all-time win-loss record at the conclusion of the 2018 season is 560–762–40.
They have been to the playoffs ten times and have won seven playoff games, three of which were victories during their run in the 2008–09 NFL playoffs. During that season, they won their only NFC Championship Game since the 1970 AFL–NFL merger, reached Super Bowl XLIII; the team has won five division titles since their 1947–48 NFL championship game appearances. The Cardinals are the only NFL team who have never lost a playoff game at home, with a 5–0 record: the 1947 NFL Championship Game, two postseason victories during the aforementioned 2008–09 NFL playoffs, one during the 2009–10 playoffs, one during the 2015–16 playoffs. From 1988 through 2012, the Cardinals conducted their annual summer training camp at Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff; the Cardinals moved their training camp to State Farm Stadium in 2013. The stadium was the site of the 2015 Pro Bowl, unlike in past years, where it was held at Aloha Stadium in Honolulu, Hawaii; the stadium played host to Super Bowls XLII and XLIX, will host Super Bowl LVII in 2023.
The franchise's inception dates back to 1898, when a neighborhood group gathered to play in the Chicago South Side, calling themselves Morgan Athletic Club. Chicago painting and building contractor Chris O'Brien acquired the team, which he relocated to Normal Field on Racine Avenue; the team was known as Racine Normals until 1901, when O'Brien bought used jerseys from the University of Chicago. He described the faded maroon clothing as "Cardinal red" and the team became the Racine Street Cardinals; the team became in 1920 a charter member of the American Professional Football Association, which two years was rechristened to National Football League. The team entered the league as the Racine Cardinals, however the name was changed in 1922 to Chicago Cardinals to avoid confusion with the Horlick-Racine Legion, who entered the league the same year. Except for 1925, when they were awarded the championship after the Pottsville Maroons were suspended, the Cardinals experienced only minimal success on the playing field during their first 26 seasons in the league.
During the post-World War II years, the team reached two straight NFL finals against the Philadelphia Eagles, winning in 1947 – eight months after Charles Bidwill's death – and losing the following year. After years of bad seasons and losing fans to the cross-town rivals Chicago Bears, by the late 1950s the Cardinals were bankrupt, owner Violet Bidwill Wolfner became interested in a relocation. Due to the formation of the rival American Football League, the NFL allowed Bidwill to relocate the team to St. Louis, where they became the St. Louis Cardinals. During the Cardinals' 28-year stay in St. Louis, they advanced to the playoffs just three times, never hosting or winning in any appearance; the overall mediocrity of the Cardinals, combined with a then-21-year-old stadium, caused game attendance to dwindle, owner Bill Bidwill decided to move the team to Arizona. Not long after the 1987 NFL season, Bidwill agreed to move to Arizona on a handshake deal with state and
2007 NFL season
The 2007 NFL season was the 88th regular season of the National Football League. Regular-season play was held from September 6 to December 30; the New England Patriots became the first team to complete the regular season undefeated since the league expanded to a 16-game regular season in 1978. Four weeks after the playoffs began on January 5, 2008, the Patriots' bid for a perfect season was dashed when they lost to the New York Giants in Super Bowl XLII, the league championship game at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Arizona on February 3, by a score of 17–14; the following rule changes were passed at the league's annual owners meeting in Phoenix, Arizona during the week of March 25–28: The instant replay system, used since the 1999 season, was made a permanent officiating tool. It was renewed on a biennial basis; the system has been upgraded to use high-definition technology. However, the systems at Texas Stadium, RCA Dome, Giants Stadium did not receive the HDTV updates since those stadiums were scheduled to be replaced in the forthcoming years.
One reason that the technology was improved was that fans with high-definition televisions at home were having better views on replays than the officials and according to Dean Blandino, the NFL's instant replay director "that could have bit us in the rear if we continued." In addition, the amount of time allotted for the referee to review a play was reduced from 90 seconds to one minute. After a play is over, players who spike the ball in the field of play, other than in the end zone, will receive a 5-yard delay of game penalty. Forward passes that unintentionally hit an offensive lineman before an eligible receiver will no longer be an illegal touching penalty, but deliberate actions are still penalized. Roughing-the-passer penalties will not be called on a defender engaged with a quarterback who extends his arms and shoves the passer to the ground. During situations where crowd noise becomes a problem, the offense can no longer ask the referee to reset the play clock, it is necessary to have the ball touch the pylon or break the plane above the pylon to count as a touchdown.
A player just had to have some portion of his body over the goal line or pylon to count a touchdown. A completed catch is now when a receiver has control of the ball. A receiver had to make "a football move" in addition to having control of the ball for a reception. Players will be subject to a fine from the league for playing with an unbuckled chin strap. Officials will not penalize for chin strap violations during a game. John Parry was promoted to referee, replacing Bill Vinovich, forced to resign due to a heart condition. Vinovich would serve as a replay official from 2007 to 2011, he would be given a clean bill of health and return to the field as a referee in 2012. The 2007 season marked the second year of the current television contracts with NBC, CBS, Fox, ESPN, the NFL Network; the pre-game shows made some changes, with former Steelers coach Bill Cowher joining host James Brown, Boomer Esiason, Shannon Sharpe and Dan Marino on CBS’ The NFL Today. On Fox, after one season on the road, Fox NFL Sunday returned to Los Angeles as Curt Menefee took over as full-time host.
Chris Rose, doing in-game updates of other NFL games, was reverted to a part-time play-by-play role. The biggest changes were at NBC and ESPN. Michael Irvin’s contract with ESPN was not renewed, former coach Bill Parcells returned to the network after four years as Cowboys head coach. Parcells left. Another pair of former Cowboys, Emmitt Smith and Keyshawn Johnson provided roles in the studio for Sunday NFL Countdown and Monday Night Countdown. At Monday Night Football, Joe Theismann was dropped after seventeen years in the booth between the Sunday and Monday Night packages, former Philadelphia Eagles quarterback and current Philadelphia Soul president Ron Jaworski took his place alongside Mike Tirico and Tony Kornheiser. Part of the reason that Jaworski replaced Theismann was because of his chemistry with Kornheiser on Pardon the Interruption, where Jaworski was a frequent guest during the football season. NBC’s Football Night in America made two changes. MSNBC Countdown anchor Keith Olbermann joined Bob Costas and Cris Collinsworth as another co-host, while Sterling Sharpe exited as a studio analyst, former New York Giants running back Tiki Barber replaced him.
In another change, Faith Hill took over singing “Waiting All Day For Sunday Night” for Pink. In the second year of the NFL Network's “Run to the Playoffs”, Marshall Faulk and Deion Sanders replaced Dick Vermeil for two games when Collinsworth was unavailable. An unforced change saw Bryant Gumbel miss the Broncos–Texans game December 13 due to a sore throat and NBC announcer Tom Hammond step into Gumbel's play-by-play role in what turned out to be more or less a preview of one of NBC's Wild Card Game announcing teams; the dispute between the NFL Network and various cable companies involving the distribution of the cable channel continued throughout the season, getting the attention of government officials when the NFL Network was scheduled to televise two high-profile regular season games: the Packers-Cowboys game on November 29 and the Patriots-Giants game on December 29. In the case of the Packers-Cowboys game, the carriage was so limited that Governor of Wisconsin Jim Doyle went to his brother's house to watch the game on satellite (which is where the majority of the view
The Chicago Bears are a professional American football team based in Chicago, Illinois. The Bears compete in the National Football League as a member club of the league's National Football Conference North division; the Bears have won nine NFL Championships, including one Super Bowl, hold the NFL record for the most enshrinees in the Pro Football Hall of Fame and the most retired jersey numbers. The Bears have recorded more victories than any other NFL franchise; the franchise was founded in Decatur, Illinois, on September 17, 1920, moved to Chicago in 1921. It is one of only two remaining franchises from the NFL's founding in 1920, along with the Arizona Cardinals, also in Chicago; the team played home games at Wrigley Field on Chicago's North Side through the 1970 season. The Bears have a long-standing rivalry with the Green Bay Packers; the team headquarters, Halas Hall, is in the Chicago suburb of Illinois. The Bears practice at adjoining facilities there during the season. Since 2002, the Bears have held their annual training camp, from late July to mid-August, at Ward Field on the campus of Olivet Nazarene University in Bourbonnais, Illinois.
In March of 1920 a man telephoned me... George Chamberlain and he was general superintendent of the A. E. Staley Company... In 1919, had formed a football team, it had done well against other local teams but Mr. Staley wanted to build it into a team that could compete with the best semi-professional and industrial teams in the country... Mr. Chamberlain asked if I would like to come to work for the Staley Company. Named the Decatur Staleys, the club was established by the A. E. Staley food starch company of Decatur, Illinois in 1919 as a company team; this was the typical start for several early professional football franchises. The company hired Edward "Dutch" Sternaman in 1920 to run the team; the 1920 Decatur Staleys season was their inaugural regular season completed in the newly formed American Professional Football Association. Full control of the team was turned over to Halas and Sternaman in 1921. Official team and league records cite Halas as the founder as he took over the team in 1920 when it became a charter member of the NFL.
The team relocated to Chicago in 1921. Under an agreement reached by Halas and Sternaman with Staley, Halas purchased the rights to the club from Staley for US$100. In 1922, Halas changed the team name from the Staleys to the Bears; the team moved into Wrigley Field, home to the Chicago Cubs baseball franchise. As with several early NFL franchises, the Bears derived their nickname from their city's baseball team. Halas liked the bright orange-and-blue colors of his alma mater, the University of Illinois, the Bears adopted those colors as their own, albeit in a darker shade of each; the Staleys/Bears dominated the league in the early years. Their rivalry with the Chicago Cardinals, the oldest in the NFL, was key in four out of the first six league titles. During the league's first six years, the Bears lost twice to the Canton Bulldogs, split with their crosstown rival Cardinals, but no other team in the league defeated the Bears more than a single time. During that span, the Bears posted 34 shutouts.
The Bears' rivalry with the Green Bay Packers is one of the oldest and most storied in American professional sports, dating back to 1921. In one infamous incident that year, Halas got the Packers expelled from the league in order to prevent their signing a particular player, graciously got them re-admitted after the Bears had closed the deal with that player; the franchise was an early success under Halas, capturing the NFL Championship in 1921 and remaining competitive throughout the decade. In 1924 the Bears claimed the Championship after defeating the Cleveland Bulldogs on December 7 putting the title "World's Champions" on their 1924 team photo, but the NFL had ruled that games after November 30 did not count towards league standings, the Bears had to settle for second place behind Cleveland. Their only losing season came in 1929. During the 1920s the club was responsible for triggering the NFL's long-standing rule that a player could not be signed until his college's senior class had graduated.
The NFL took that action as a consequence of the Bears' aggressive signing of famous University of Illinois player Red Grange within a day of his final game as a collegian. Despite much of the on-field success, the Bears were a team in trouble, they faced the problem of flatlined attendance. The Bears would only draw 5,000–6,000 fans a game, while a University of Chicago game would draw 40,000–50,000 fans a game. By adding top college football draw Red Grange to the roster, the Bears knew that they found something to draw more fans to their games. C. C. Pyle was able to secure a $2,000 per game contract for Grange, in one of the first games, the Bears defeated the Green Bay Packers, 21–0. However, Grange remained on the sidelines while learning the team's plays from Bears quarterback Joey Sternaman. In 1925, The Bears would go on a barnstorming tour, showing off the best football player of the day. 75,000 people paid to see Grange
Big Stone Gap, Virginia
Big Stone Gap is a town in Wise County, United States. The town was economically centered around the coal industry for much of its early development; the population was 5,643 at the 2010 census. The community was known as "Mineral City" and "Three Forks" before taking its name in 1888; the "Big Stone Gap" refers to the valley created on the Appalachia Straight, located between the town and Appalachia. The town served as an important center for coal and iron development in the 1880s and 1890s and residents hoped its coal and iron ore deposits would make it "the Pittsburgh of the South."The Big Stone Gap post office was established in 1856. The Christ Episcopal Church, John Fox, Jr. House, Southwest Virginia Museum Historical State Park, Terrace Park Girl Scout Cabin, June Tolliver House, C. Bascom Slemp Federal Building are listed on the National Register of Historic Places. In October 1978, John W. Warner the Republican candidate for U. S. Senate from Virginia, his wife, British-American actress Elizabeth Taylor, stopped in Big Stone Gap to campaign for his upcoming election.
At Fraley's Coach House, a local diner where they were each meeting with voters, Taylor became choked on a chicken bone in her esophagus that required her to be transported to the nearby Lonesome Pine Regional Hospital. Taylor recovered from the event and sent a donation to the hospital as a thank you. In 2014 the American drama romantic comedy film Big Stone Gap and directed by Big Stone Gap native Adriana Trigiani and produced by Donna Gigliotti, began filming in the town; the film starred Ashley Judd, Patrick Wilson, Whoopi Goldberg, others, including local talent for many of the extras and larger scenes. The movie was based on Trigiani's 2000 novel of the same name and was produced on a budget of $3.5 million. The film premiered at the Virginia Film Festival on November 6, 2014 and expanded to a wider release of over 100 theaters in 2015. Big Stone Gap became the first locality in the nation to pass a resolution in support of the federal Black Lung Disability Trust Fund on August 16, 2018.
The measure urged Congress to support the existing tax rate at the time. Due to mounting financial burdens caused by a shrinking population and underfunding from the state government, local elected officials voted to consolidate several of the county's schools in 2012, including those in Big Stone Gap. Powell Valley Primary School was formed from the consolidation of the previous primary education school and Appalachia Elementary. A combination of certain grades from Appalachia Elementary and Powell Valley Middle School were combined to form Union Middle School. Union High School was formed from the consolidation of Appalachia High School and Powell Valley High School. All schools continue to be operated by Wise County Public Schools. Mountain Empire Community College is a public community college for residents in Lee, Wise and Dickenson counties, the City of Norton; the college admitted its first students in 1972 and as of the 2017-18 school year enrolled 3,560 students. King University, based in Bristol, has a satellite campus in Big Stone Gap located on the Mountain Empire Community College campus.
Big Stone Gap is home to several museums. The June Tolliver House, located on Jerome Street, is home to the Trail of the Lonesome Pine, the official outdoor drama of Virginia; the Southwest Virginia Museum Historical State Park is located in the downtown area in the former home of C. Bascom Slemp. Construction of the building was completed in 1895 and purchased by Slemp in 1929. Before his death in 1943, Slemp established the C. Bascom Slemp hoped to see the house turned into a museum. In 1946 the state of Virginia acquired the home, the Slemp Foundation donated the initial collection from Slemp's personal belongings. Big Stone Gap hosts the Harry W. Meador, Jr. Coal Museum. Meador, to whom the museum is dedicated, collected many of the objects displayed in the museum from his time with the Westmoreland Coal Company during the first half of the 20th century; the museum was dedicated in 1982 after his death. The federal building named for C. Bascom Slemp was built in 1912 and it continues to house a division of the United States District Court for the Western District of Virginia.
Big Stone Gap is home to Wallens Ridge State Prison, a state prison, a part of the Commonwealth of Virginia Department of Corrections since 1999. Opened as a supermax prison, it has been downgraded to a "high level" security facility. Construction and maintenance of the facility generated millions of dollars for the local economy, suppressed from a sagging history of coal mining. Rufus A. Ayers - Former Virginia Attorney General Leanza Cornett - Miss America 1993 John Fox, Jr. - Author Abner Linwood Holton Jr. - Former Virginia governor Julius Jones - Professional Football Player Thomas Jones - Professional Football Player Carl Martin - Musician Adriana Trigiani - Author Roy Cornelius Smith - Opera Singer CC Swiney - Film Actor Big Stone Gap is located at 36°52′02″N 82°46′28″W. According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 4.9 square miles, all land. Big Stone Gap is at the junction of U. S. Route 23 and U. S. Route 58 Alternate. Big Stone Gap is closer to the state capitals of seven other states than it is to Richmond, VA, its own state capital, with regards to highway mileage.
The other state capitals are Columbus, OH. Additionally Indianapolis, Indiana is only six miles farther from Big Stone Gap than Richmond; as of the census of 2010, there were 5,643 people, 2,034 households, 1,075 families residing in the town. The popula