KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Dr. Homer Rice, who helped revolutionize football by popularizing the triple option offense as a coach before later becoming one of the nation’s most respected athletics administrators, and Mike MacIntyre, who in 2012 led San Jose State to its first 10-win season in a quarter century before being named head coach at Colorado in December, have been honored by the Fellowship of Christian Athletes as winners of the Grant Teaff Lifetime Achievement Award and the Grant Teaff Coach of the Year Award, respectively.
Rice, the Grant Teaff Lifetime Achievement Award honoree, was a head coach at the high school, collegiate and professional levels over a 27-year coaching career. In 11 seasons as a high school coach in Tennessee and Kentucky, Rice put together a 102-9-7 overall record. His success drew the attention of college coaches, and Rice eventually moved to Lexington, Ky., to become Kentucky’s offensive coordinator. He also spent a year running the offense at Oklahoma before head coaching stops at Cincinnati (1967-68), Rice (1976-77) and with the National Football League’s Cincinnati Bengals (1978-79).
After coaching at the University of Cincinnati, Rice began a career in athletics administration as the athletics director at the University of North Carolina, where he served from 1969-75. He simultaneously served as football coach and athletics director at Rice. In 1980, he began a 17-year term as Director of Athletics at Georgia Tech, helping turn around a struggling department that would eventually win a national championship in football and build national powers in men’s basketball, baseball and golf. He also chaired an NCAA committee that formed what would become the CHAMPS/Life Skills program that is sponsored by a large number of NCAA athletics departments.
Every year, the Division IA Athletic Directors Association awards the Homer Rice Award, presented to the athletics director with a distinguished career, who has made a significant impact on the profession and intercollegiate athletics, in his honor.
“If there is anyone in America deserving of this award, it’s Dr. Homer Rice,” former FCA executive director Dal Shealy, a longtime colleague and friend of Rice’s, said. “He has great wisdom and insights, and I’ve incorporated many of his leadership traits into my own philosophy.
“As a coach, he was one of those special guys,” Shealy said of Rice. “Not many people can take struggling programs at the high school and college levels and turn them into winners, and then he became a wonderful athletics director. Homer Rice is a servant-leader who continually works on his heart, his attitude and his mindset, and has made God his top priority, followed by his wife and children, and then other people and his profession.”
MacIntyre, the Grant Teaff Coach of the Year honoree, was named head coach at Colorado on Dec. 10 after leading San Jose State to a 10-2 regular season record. Including a Military Bowl victory (in which MacIntyre did not coach), the Spartans made a 10-game improvement in a two-year span. The lone losses came to Pacific 12 Conference and Rose Bowl champion Stanford in a 20-17 game, and to Western Athletic Conference champion Utah State.
In San Jose State’s first 10-win season since 1987, MacIntyre’s Spartans averaged 42.3 points per game during the regular season, including seven games in which they scored at least 35 points. SJSU’s defense also ranked among the national leaders in several statistical categories. Sixteen Spartans earned All-WAC honors and 36 school and conference records either were tied or broken.
“Mike MacIntyre took over a San Jose State program in disarray and turned it around,” Shealy said. “He hired a group of fellow Christians to join his coaching staff and, not only built a winner, but really got a lot of people in that community on board. Through the years, he’s been one of FCA’s greatest supporters.”
Rice and MacIntyre were honored at the American Football Coaches Association convention in Nashville earlier this month.
Named in honor of former Baylor coach, AFCA executive director and member of the FCA Board of Trustees Grant Teaff, the Coach of the Year Award presented by FCA recognizes a football coach who exemplifies Christian principles and who is involved in FCA. The award is also based on the success and performance of the coach’s team that season. Previous winners include Tommy Bowden, Tommy Tuberville, Sylvester Croom and Phil Jones.
The Grant Teaff Lifetime Achievement Award recognizes a coach that has committed his life to being a Christian influence on the lives of student-athletes. Previous winners include Parker Dykes, Jimmy Keeling, Fisher DeBerry, Jerry Moore, Mel Tjeerdsma, Houston Nutt and Tony Dungy.
- FCA.org -