Detroit, MI — The Detroit Lions have named Denny Hopkins of Linden High School the week one recipient of the 2012 High School Coach of the Week Program presented by the Michigan Army National Guard.
Hopkins led his Eagles to a 17-15 victory over arch-rival Fenton on August 24 to claim the Eagles first victory of the season. The victory was also Hopkins’ 100th career victory (100-43) in 14 seasons as Linden’s Head Football Coach. Prior to becoming head coach, he spent 26 years as an assistant coach at Linden. Hopkins, a member of the Michigan High School Football Coaches Association Hall of Fame, has led Linden to the state playoffs 12 times, including the last 10 seasons in a row. This Friday, Linden will look to go 2-0 as they take on Holly at 7 p.m.
In addition to his accomplishments on the field, Coach Hopkins and the Linden High School Athletic Department are proactive in terms of promoting player health and safety within their school. Baseline cognitive evaluations are administered to all Linden High School student-athletes of contact sports at the outset of the school year. These tests are administered by Dr. Donna Benford of Silver Lake Family Practice. This baseline testing is critical in identifying and managing a concussion once an injury has happened.
Each week throughout the 2012 nine-week high school football regular season, one coach that best develops his players’ character, discipline, and football skill in addition to emphasizing player health and safety in their program, will be recognized for his commitment to the team, school, and community. The winner is selected by a panel of high school football media members — Mick McCabe (Detroit Free Press), Hugh Bernreuter (Saginaw News), and Bret Bakita (107.3 FM-WBBL, Grand Rapids).
This season’s program will award $22,000 to aid in the development and promotion of high school football in the state of Michigan thanks to contributions from the Detroit Lions and the National Football League and presenting sponsor, Michigan Army National Guard.
Each winning coach throughout the regular season will receive a $2,000 donation to his school’s football program. All weekly winners will be honored at an awards ceremony during the Lions-Bears game at Ford Field on December 30. During the ceremony, the Lions will also introduce the High School Coach of the Year. This season’s Coach of the Year will receive a $4,000 donation to his team’s football program.
In addition to the monetary award, all winners receive a certificate signed by Lions’ head coach Jim Schwartz and National Football League (NFL) commissioner Roger Goodell. Winning coaches also receive a personalized game ball and a Detroit Lions “Coach of the Week” hat.
Currently in its’ 16th year, the Detroit Lions High School Coach of the Week program has awarded $290,000 to high school football programs throughout the state of Michigan. For more information on the Detroit Lions High School Coach of the Week program, contact Chris Fritzsching, Lions’ Director of Youth Football, at 313-262-2248.