"Why Do You Love Football?" photo challenge winners announced
Stuart Steele, 47, of Overland Park, KS and Ben Queen, 13, of Bridgeport, WV have been named the winners of the Adult and Teen Divisions of the Canon and Pro Football Hall of Fame “Why Do You Love Football?” photo challenge respectively. Steele and Queen each have won a trip for four to attend Super Bowl XLIII in Tampa, FL where their winning photos will be displayed at the NFL Experience. Additionally, the two winners won a trip for four to the 2009 Pro Football Hall of Fame Enshrinement Festival in August where their winning photos will be on display in the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
This is the fourth year of the nationwide photo contest in which one Grand Prize winner from each division was selected. Fans entered photos in two categories “Action” and “Feature.” The photo contest allowed football and photography fans the opportunity to capture the passion and excitement of youth football by submitting images of everything from a playful catch in the backyard to any youth, school or organized football game.
The photo submitted by Steele was captured during the third quarter of Round One of the NAIA Football Championship series game. In the photo, Baker University freshman wide receiver Bradley Walker of Wichita, KS positioned himself at the five-yard line awaiting a pass from quarterback Mack Brown only to have the moment spoiled by a spectacular leaping deflection by Morningside College senior defensive back Ryan Oetken. One of Mr. Steele’s other photos was also a finalist in the “Action” category.
Queen’s photo, “The Longest Yard,” was captured during a middle school game and features a single ball carrier dragging several defenders with others in hot pursuit. Much of Queen’s inspiration for photography can be directly credited to Canon Explorer of Light and Sports Illustrated photographer Peter Read Miller, whose personal website and NFL photo tips have helped Ben develop his abilities as a photographer.
“Year in and year out this photo contest has grown to become a valued part of Canon’s association with the National Football League,” said Yuichi Ishizuka, senior vice president and general manager, Consumer Imaging Group, Canon U.S.A. “The excitement surrounding this contest further illustrates how enjoyable photography can be for people of all ages.”
The judging panel reviewed more than 10,000 entries. The astute panel of judges included former NFL quarterback Archie Manning along with some of the world’s top sports photographers such as Peter Read Miller, 2007 and 2006 “Why Do You Love Football?” photo contest adult grand prize winner Diana Porter, Steve Apps of the Wisconsin State Journal, Scott Heckel of The (Canton) Repository, freelance photographer Dave Drapkin, and Tony Tomsic, a freelance sports photographer who has photographed every Super Bowl to-date.
The judges selected 28 images which were then submitted for online voting through the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s website, Profootballhof.com, that determined the grand prize winners.
Class of 2009 announced
Wide receiver Bob Hayes, guard Randall McDaniel, defensive end Bruce Smith, linebacker Derrick Thomas, owner Ralph Wilson, and defensive back Rod Woodson make up the Class of 2009 Pro Football Hall of Fame enshrinees. The new inductees will be formally enshrined on Saturday, August 8 in Canton.