NEW HAVEN — The Greenwich Cardinals, the Class LL state champion and No. 1 team in the state’s high school football season-ending polls, is the Walter Camp Football Foundation’s choice to receive the 2018 Joseph W. Kelly Award.
The Kelly Award is presented annually to Connecticut’s top high school football team.
It is the first time Greenwich has won the award. It was also the fourth straight year a team from the FCIAC has earned the honor, tying the record held by the SCC (2009-2012).
“Utilizing a stingy defense and an explosive offense, Greenwich was exceptional on its way to its championship season,” Walter Camp Football Foundation President Michael Madera said. “We salute Coach John Marinelli, his staff and players on an outstanding season.”
Greenwich went 10-0 during the 2018 regular-season. The Cardinals then defeated New Britain 34-13 in the Class LL quarterfinals on November 27. In the semifinals, Greenwich defeated Newtown, 50-0, and culminated its championship season with a 34-0 victory over New Canaan on December 8. It was the Cardinals’ first state title since 2007.
In their 13 games, the Cardinals averaged 43.4 points per game, allowing just 4.2 a game.
Coach Marinelli and the Greenwich team will be recognized at the organization’s High School Breakfast of Champions event, on Saturday, Jan. 12 at the Omni New Haven Hotel. Greenwich, along with the three other state football champions — Daniel Hand, St. Joseph and Bloomfield — will be feted. Also that morning, the Walter Camp All-Connecticut Team, High School Player and Coach of the Year will also be recognized.
Later that evening, The Foundation will hold its annual national awards banquet, presented by David McDermott Lexus, at Yale University’s Lanman Center. Walter Camp Player of the Year Tua Tagovailoa, along with members of the 2018 Walter Camp All-America team, and other major award winners (Man of the Year — Mike Golic; Distinguished American — Archie Manning, and Connecticut Player of the Year — Zach Allen), will be honored.
Walter Camp, “The Father of American football,” first selected an All-America team in 1889. Camp — a former Yale University athlete and football coach — is also credited with developing play from scrimmage, set plays, the numerical assessment of goals and tries and the restriction of play to eleven men per side. The Walter Camp Football Foundation — a New Haven-based all-volunteer group — was founded in 1967 to perpetuate the ideals of Camp and to continue the tradition of selecting annually an All-America team. Visit www.waltercamp.org for more information.