Virginia Tech football coach Frank Beamer and Carolina Panthers owner/founder Jerry Richardson will be honored with the Atlantic Coast Conference Commissioner’s Cup during festivities surrounding this weekend’s Dr Pepper ACC Football Championship Game.
Beamer and Richardson become 11th and 12th recipients of the award, given solely at the discretion of the Commissioner. They have been designated as honorary captains for this year’s 11th annual ACC Football Championship Game and will take part in the pregame coin toss Saturday night at Bank of America Stadium. The meeting between top-ranked Clemson (12-0) and 10th-ranked North Carolina (11-1) is slated for an 8 p.m. kickoff and will be televised nationally by ABC.
“Frank Beamer and Jerry Richardson are both long-time friends of the league, who have had an outstanding impact on the game of football,” said ACC Commissioner John Swofford. “Their accomplishments go far beyond on-field success, and we are tremendously pleased to have them serve as honorary captains.”
Beamer, who announced his decision to retire following Virginia Tech’s participation in this year’s postseason bowl game, stands as the winningest active Division I football coach and the sixth all-time with 279 career wins. He has posted 237 victories over the past 29 years with the Hokies, winning seven conference titles – including four as a member of the ACC – and posting 13 seasons with 10 or more wins. Virginia Tech will play in a bowl game for the 23rd consecutive year under Beamer’s watch, the longest current streak in college football recognized by the NCAA.
“It is my honor to present Frank Beamer with the Commissioner’s Cup,” Swofford said. “As one of the most respected coaches in college athletics, he has had an immeasurable effect on the sport of football, his players, staff and fans. He is well-deserving of this honor based not only on his on-field accomplishments, but also his constant integrity, class and humility.”
Beamer will receive his Commissioner’s Cup Award during Friday evening’s Night of Legends ceremony at the Charlotte Convention Center.
Richardson became the first former NFL player since George Halas to become a team owner when the Carolinas were unanimously awarded the NFL’s 29th franchise in 1993. He has long displayed his commitment to the college game, including when the Carolina Panthers welcomed the Dr Pepper ACC Football Championship Game for the first time in 2010. The ACC has played its title game at Bank of America Stadium every year since and is scheduled to continue doing so through 2019.
“Jerry Richardson and his organization have been outstanding partners to the Atlantic Coast Conference and college football,” Swofford said. “We are proud of our association with the Richardson family and the entire Carolina Panthers franchise.”
2015 Dr Pepper ACC Football Championship: The 2015 Dr Pepper ACC Football Championship Game is set for an 8 p.m. kickoff on Saturday, Dec. 5 at Charlotte’s Bank of America Stadium. The game will be nationally televised on ABC and will feature the Atlantic Division Champion, Clemson, against the Coastal Division Champion, North Carolina. For more information on the full weekend of ACC festivities, visit accchampionship.com.