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Renowned sports journalist Frank Deford to address URI Honors Colloquium Oct. 4

Media Contact: Dave Lavallee, 401-874-5862

See schedule changes for Nov. 8, Nov. 29 lectures

KINGSTON, R.I. -- September 26, 2005 -- Award-winning sports journalist Frank Deford will speak about “Sport: The Hype and the Hoopla,” at the University of Rhode Island Honors Colloquium, Tuesday Oct. 4.

The free public lecture presented by the URI Honors Program will be held at 7 p.m. in the Chafee Social Science Center, Barry Marks Auditorium, Room 271.

Deford's work has appeared in virtually every medium. In magazines, he is the senior writer at Sports Illustrated. On radio, he may be heard as a commentator on NPR’s Morning Edition, and on television, he is a regular correspondent on the HBO show, RealSports With Bryant Gumbel.

Deford is the author of 14 books, two of which -- the novel, Everybody’s All-American, and Alex: The Life Of A Child, his memoir about his daughter who died of cystic fibrosis -- have been made into movies. His latest book, The Old Ball Game, about Christy Mathewson and John McGraw and baseball at the turn of the century, will be published in April 2005 by Grove/Atlantic. Deford also wrote the screenplay for an original film, Trading Hearts. His latest theatrical screenplay, The Sister-In-Law, a comedy, is being produced by Lions Gate. ESPN will film his screenplay, Four Minutes, about Roger Bannister and the four-minute mile, in the spring of 2005.

As a journalist, Deford was most recently presented with the National Magazine Award for his story on Bill Russell. He has been elected to the Hall of Fame of the National Association of Sportscasters and Sportswriters. Deford was voted by his peers as U.S. Sportswriter of the Year six times. The American Journalism Review has likewise cited him as the nation’s finest sportswriter, and twice he was voted Magazine Writer of the Year by the Washington Journalism Review.

Deford has been presented with a Christopher Award and journalism honor awards from the University of Missouri and Northeastern University, and he has received a number of honorary degrees. The Sporting News has described Deford as the “most influential sports voice” among members of the print media, and the magazine GQ has called him, simply, “the world’s greatest sportswriter.” In broadcast, Deford has won both an Emmy and a George Foster Peabody Award.

Note to editors: There has been a change in the colloquium schedule. U.S. Sen. Birch Bayh and a group of panelists were schedule to discuss “Title IX and Intercollegiate Sport” on Nov. 29, but they will now appear Tuesday, Nov. 8. The lecture on “The Importance of Fitness,” with Melissa Johnson and Dr. Robert Butler will be held Tuesday, Nov. 29. Each talk will be at 7 p.m. in the Barry Marks Auditorium, Room 271.

Major sponsors of the colloquium are The Providence Journal, Theta Chi Fraternity, URI Honors Program, URI President’s Office, Institute for International Sport, URI Office of the Provost, URI College of Arts and Sciences, URI College of Business Administration and the URI Division of University Advancement.

Co-sponsors are the URI Department of Athletics, Multicultural Center, College of Nursing, College of Human Science and Services, College of Pharmacy, Office of Student Affairs and Women’s Studies Program.

For more information, visit or contact the URI Honors Center at 401-874-2381 or

The Honors Program at URI offers learning enrichment opportunities that broaden and enhance the undergraduate educational experience. The program features small classes, a nationally renowned honors colloquium, national scholarship advising, and in-depth study and research with faculty mentors. All major national scholarship competitions are available to selected students.

Continuing URI students must maintain a minimum 3.2 grade point average or receive permission from the Honors Director.

Open access to the Honors Program continues for qualified students throughout their undergraduate years. About 900 URI students participate in the Honors Program. About 60 students are participating in the Honors Colloquium this fall, which also has a companion class.