Tony Barnhart was awarded the Distinguished Achievement in Cable and Broadcasting Award by DiGamma Kappa. He is pictured above with the DiGamma Kappa Board of Directors.
Tony Barnhart recognized with DiGamma Kappa Distinguished Achievement Award
The University of Georgia Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication’s national broadcast society, DiGamma Kappa, presented Tony Barnhart, also known as “Mr. College Football,” with its annual Distinguished Achievement in Broadcasting and Cable Award.
The award was presented Feb. 24 at DiGamma Kappa’s annual awards banquet at the Richard B. Russell Building Special Collections Libraries.
“Tony embodies the passion and the dedication that we all strive for,” said Daniel Bignault, director of development for DiGamma Kappa. “Thank you, Tony, for inspiring us and being such an incredible role model that we can look up to and follow.”
Tony Barnhart, also known as Mr. College Football, recently completed his 41st year of covering college football for newspapers, radio, television and the internet.
He has also written five books about college football, including “Dooley: My 40 Years at Georgia” and “From Herschel to a Hobnail Boot: The Life and Times of Larry Munson.”
Barnhart, a former national college football writer for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, is currently a college football analyst on the SEC Network and is an active blogger with Gridironnow.com and through his website TonyBarnhart.com. He has also been a contributing reporter for “College Football Today” for CBS Sports and was the host of “The Tony Barnhart Show,” on the CBS Sports network.
“Being a journalist was the furthest thing from my mind when I went to college,” Barnhart admitted during his comments at the awards ceremony. “I was going to be a football coach. I loved football from the minute I walked into Sanford Stadium in 1965.”
Among his numerous honors are the Bert McGrane Award given by the Football Writers Association of America and the Furman Bisher Award for Media Excellence given by the Atlanta Sports Council. He was inducted into the Grady College Fellowship in Spring 2016.
Barnhart provided a collection of advice to the students about listening to smart people, dressing professionally, being over-prepared and arriving early.
He also offered advice about keys to being a good journalist.
“Always be skeptical; never be cynical,” Barnhart said. “You’ve got to be curious. You can’t be in this business without being curious. Skepticism opens doors and gets to the truth and to what you need. Cynicism is lazy and close-minded…and, it’s almost always wrong.”
His final insight, and what he called the most important, was inspired by Grady College Dean Charles Davis.
“When we get it right and stick to the fundamentals, we are not the enemy of the people,” he concluded. “We are their servants and it is our honor to serve.”
The Distinguished Achievement in Broadcasting and Cable Award is presented by DiGamma Kappa and is co-sponsored by the Georgia Association of Broadcasters and Grady College. Previous winners include David Chandley (2016), Amy Robach (2015), and Gale Anne Hurd (2013).
DiGamma Kappa celebrates its 78th anniversary this year. It is the nation’s oldest student broadcast society and was founded at Grady College. DiGamma Kappa encourages student participation in all phases of production for television and radio, and fosters professional competence among its members. It also strives to promote a high quality of broadcast journalism while adhering to outstanding ethical standards.