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Northwest Missouri State University

News Release

Sept. 8, 2010

Missouri governor presents championship, coach of the year trophies at Northwest football opener

MARYVILLE, Mo. - Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon visited Northwest Missouri State University Thursday, Sept. 2, and attended the University's season-opening football game, where he participated in a pre-game ceremony recognizing the football team, cheerleading team and head football coach Mel Tjeerdsma.

Prior to the Bearcats' game against Texas A&M-Kingsville, Nixon was on hand to present members of the football team's 2009 senior class with the 2009 NCAA Division II National Championship trophy. The seniors escorted the trophy to the Loch-O'Rourke Family Center where it joined the 1998 and 1999 championship trophies.

Nixon also presented members of Northwest's cheerleading squad with its 2010 UCA national championship trophy. The squad, led by head coach Jason Sack, won the program's first title back January.

Lisa Paige, of Liberty Mutual Group, also was on hand to present Tjeerdsma with the 2009 Coach of the Year Award. The award came with a $20,000 scholarship award for the Northwest Alumni Association and a $50,000 charitable donation from Liberty Mutual. Representatives from Big Brothers, Big Sisters, Fellowship of Christian Athletes and First Street Baptist Church were on hand for the ceremony.

Rep. Mike Thomson and Sen. Brad Lager also participated in the presentations.

Below are video highlights of the Gov. Nixon's visit and the presentations. For photos from the ceremony and game, click here.

For more information, please contact:

Mark Hornickel, Communication Manager | 660.562.1704 | Fax: 660.562.1900

Northwest Missouri State University
215 Administration Building | 800 University Drive | Maryville, MO 64468