Nov. 21, 2002

NOTRE DAME, Ind. – The NCAA Honors Committee has announced the six NCAA Silver Anniversary Award recipients for 2003 – and that list includes a current University of Notre Dame head coach and a former Irish All-American.

The Silver Anniversary Award recognizes former student-athletes who have distinguished themselves since completing their college athletics careers 25 years ago.

The honorees for 2003 are:

  • Debbie Brown, University of Southern California, volleyball, women’s volleyball coach at the University of Notre Dame.
  • Dale Kramer, Carleton College, track and field and cross country, certified financial planner.
  • Kenneth MacAfee, University of Notre Dame, football, oral and maxillofacial surgeon.
  • Ann Meyers Drysdale, University of California, Los Angeles, basketball, volleyball and track and field, television broadcaster.
  • Harold Warren Moon, University of Washington, football; television broadcaster.
  • Gifford Nielsen, Brigham Young University, football and basketball, television broadcaster.

This year’s honorees have achieved a wide range of accomplishments since they graduated from college. For instance, the following are just a few of their accomplishments:

  • One honoree is a collegiate volleyball head coach, who has led her teams to NCAA appearances in 15 of 16 seasons.
  • One was chosen as a member of the Division III men’s cross country all-century team.
  • One is an oral and maxillofacial surgeon, who has received multiple faculty appointments at various hospitals and teaches at the Harvard University School of Dental Medicine.
  • One is the only woman ever to be drafted by the NBA and was a member of the 1976 Olympic silver medal team.
  • One had a 17-year career in the NFL as a record-setting quarterback.
  • One was chosen as one of the NCAA Today’s Top V honorees in 1977. This award, now called the Today’s Top VIII, honors outstanding senior student-athletes of the preceding calendar year.

The recipients will be honored Sunday, January 12, at the Honors Dinner during the annual NCAA Convention in Anaheim, California.

The award winners were selected by the NCAA Honors Committee, which is composed of eight athletics administrators at member institutions and nationally distinguished citizens who are former student-athletes. The members of the NCAA Honors Committee are: Harry Carson, president, Harry Carson, Inc.; Eugene F. Corrigan, commissioner emeritus, Atlantic Coast Conference; Clyde Doughty Jr., athletics director, New York Institute of Technology; Jack Ford, ESPN news anchor/correspondent; Jo Ann Harper, athletics director, Dartmouth College; Susan Hartmann, Faculty Athletic Representative, Ohio State University; Karen L. Johnson, director of institutional research, Alfred University; and Valerie Richardson, assistant commissioner, West Coast Conference. Potential candidates are nominated by NCAA member institutions and selected by the committee. Here are complete biographies of the award winners:

Debbie Brown
University of Southern California
Women’s Volleyball Coach, University of Notre Dame

Brown has led her team to NCAA appearances in 15 of 16 seasons as a head coach, including the last 10 straight with Notre Dame, and has captured five Big East Conference crowns. A 2002 Olympic Torchbearer, she was NCAA District I Coach of the Year in 1997 and a three-time Big East coach of the year. She also was the American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) Mideast Regional Coach of the Year in 1992-93.

Brown also coached at Arizona State University, where she was named Pacific-10 Conference coach of the year in 1986. Brown has amassed a 393-177 career record and a 276-94 record at Notre Dame. Also active in coaching on the national level, Brown was an assistant coach for the U.S. bronze medal team at the 1990 world championships and assisted the 1988 U.S. Olympic team.

The 1977 collegiate player of the year led Southern California to a 72-1 record during her career. She was a six-time United States Volleyball Association (USVBA) first-team all-American, a two-time collegiate all-American, and a two-time Association for Intercollegiate Athletics for Women all-American. She competed at the 1974 World Championships and was a member of three USVBA national champion teams, most recently in 1986. Brown was recognized by USA Volleyball as an all-time great player in 1995.

A member of the USVBA board of directors, she was an Olympic committee athletes advisory council member from 1980 to 1984 and president of the AVCA in 1995-96. She also is a member of the AVCA all-America selection committee.

Brown also served as a co-captain of the 1980 Olympic Women’s Volleyball Team.

A motivational speaker and coach at national banquets and camps organized by the Fellowship of Christian Athletes and Young Life, she also serves as a volunteer for Christmas in April, a home-rehabilitation program in South Bend, Indiana.

Dale Kramer
Carleton College
Track and Field/Cross Country
Certified Financial Planner

A two-time national champion in both track (5,000 meters, 1977-78) and cross country (1976-77), Kramer graduated holding Carleton records in all track events from 1,000 to 10,000 meters.

A Division III track and field all-American from 1976 to 1978, Kramer dominated distance running in the Midwest Conference during his career, winning the conference mile championship three times and the three-mile run twice. He earned all-conference honors four times in outdoor track and three times in indoor track. Kramer finished in the top 25 in the Division III Cross Country Championships four times, leading his team to four conference titles in the process. The three-time conference cross country champion graduated having set nine different cross country course records. He was featured as a Notable Athlete by Sports Illustrated in 1977.

The certified financial planner and second vice-president, investments, for Salomon Smith Barney was selected to the Division III men’s cross country all-century team in 1999. His previous postgraduate honors included induction into his alma mater’s hall of fame in 1988 and an NCAA postgraduate scholarship in 1978.

Kramer received a volunteer of the year award from Riverview Correctional Facility for his work with the life-development program Success Outside of Prison. He is past secretary for his local Rotary Club and is treasurer on the board of advisors for the Massena (New York) Uninsured Adult Free Clinic. He serves as a trustee, deacon and youth instructor for New Testament Church in Massena, as well as advisor and instructor for the “Tech Prep” program at Massena Central High School. He also serves as a volunteer for three school districts, helping to increase interest in the arts in a public-school setting.

Kenneth MacAfee
University of Notre Dame
Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon

A 1997 inductee to the College Football Hall of Fame, MacAfee was MVP on the 1977 Notre Dame team that was named wire-service national champion. That season’s Walter Camp player of the year, he finished third in the Heisman Trophy voting. A three-time all-American, he finished his career ranked third among all-time Notre Dame receivers. He played in the Hula Bowl and Japan Bowl college all-star games in 1978.

A first-round draft pick of the San Francisco 49ers, he played two years there and a partial season with the Minnesota Vikings before suffering a career-ending injury. A recipient of the Moose Krause Chapter of the National Football Foundation and Hall of Fame Distinguished American Award in 1992, he also received the Earl Banks Hoyt Award for annual excellence in teaching, which is awarded to a junior faculty member at the University of Pennsylvania School of Dental Medicine in 1990 and 1992. He received a Distinguished American Award from Notre Dame in 1992.

MacAfee has been a member of the Massachusetts Society of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons and the Massachusetts Dental Society, as well as a fellow for the American College of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons since 1994.

He has received multiple faculty appointments at the University of Pennsylvania School of Dental Medicine and as a clinical associate professor at the Harvard University School of Dental Medicine, where he has taught since 1995. MacAfee has received appointments from more than eight different hospitals and has served as an attending oral and maxillofacial surgeon at Massachusetts General Hospital since 1995. He has written 13 journals, six abstracts, three books and several articles related to oral and maxillofacial surgery.

A United Way overseas health volunteer, he is an active member of Physicians Fighting Cancer, Homes for the Homeless and Northern Home for Wayward Children, as well as a spokesman for Delaware Valley AIDS Awareness Program.

Ann Meyers Drysdale
University of California, Los Angeles
Basketball/Volleyball/Track and Field
Television Broadcaster

Known mostly as one of women’s college basketball’s all-time greats, Meyers Drysdale also starred in volleyball and track and field. In 1978, she was the Broderick Cup award winner as both the outstanding collegiate basketball player and as the outstanding female athlete for all sports. After graduating, she became the only woman drafted by the NBA, then signed as a free agent with the Indiana Pacers.

She graduated as the first basketball four-time first-team Kodak all-American, male or female. She also led the Bruins to their first women’s basketball national championship in 1978 and set school records in 12 of 13 statistical categories. She still holds school marks for career steals (403), single-season steals (125 in 1977-78) and career blocked shots (101).

The first woman to receive an athletics scholarship from UCLA, her jersey number (15) has been retired by the basketball team, which she led to an 84-14 record. Meyers Drysdale also won three letters in both volleyball and track. In track, she was a member of the 1975 NCAA championship team. She was selected to the U.S. basketball team for the world championships in 1975, the same year in which she was a member of the Pan Am Games gold medal team. She was a member of the Olympic silver medal team in 1976 and the silver medal World University Games team in 1977. She was named Women’s Professional Basketball League MVP in 1979-80.

She has been inducted into numerous post-competition honorary institutions, including the Naismith National Basketball Hall of Fame (1993), Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame (1999) and Women’s Sports Hall of Fame (1987).

Now a television broadcaster, she worked at the 2000 Olympics and has covered the NCAA Division I Women’s Basketball Championship since 1985, including the Women’s Final Four, which she has announced since 1996. She also has covered WNBA games since 1997.

Her philanthropic contributions include volunteer work for Special Olympics, Kids in Sports, Boys and Girls Club, YMCA, Sugar Ray Robinson Foundation, Betty Ford Clinic and the American Heart Association.

Harold Warren Moon
University of Washington
Television Broadcaster

Moon was named the 1978 Rose Bowl MVP after leading the Huskies to a win over Michigan. He passed for 3,000 yards in three seasons, earning Pacific-8 Conference co-player of the year honors as a senior in 1977. He played in the Canadian Football League (CFL) from 1978 to 1983, earning league MVP honors and leading the Edmonton Eskimos to a record five consecutive Grey Cup titles before moving on to the NFL for a 17-year career as a record-setting quarterback for four teams.

He ranks third all-time in NFL career passing yards (49,325) and set the NFL record for completions (404) in 1991. He was named the NFL’s Most Outstanding Offensive Player in 1990. Moon also was named as an AFC participant in the Pro Bowl a record eight times (MVP in the 1998 game).

He was inducted into the Husky Hall of Fame in 1984, the Rose Bowl Hall of Fame in 1997, and the CFL Hall of Fame in 2001.

Named 1989 NFL Man of the Year for work in the community, he established the Crescent Moon Foundation to raise money for college academic scholarships in Seattle, Los Angeles, Houston, and Minneapolis-St. Paul. He also was the Houston Firefighters Man of the Year and the South Texas March of Dimes “Headliner of the Year.” Voted one of five Outstanding Houstonians, he also received the National Urban Coalition Superstar Award in 1989. The next year he was selected to President George H.W. Bush’s media advisory committee for an economic summit.

Now a television and radio broadcaster, he has covered the NFL for both media and covered NBA playoff games for television.

Gifford Nielsen
Brigham Young University
Television Broadcaster

A 1994 inductee to the College Football Hall of Fame, Nielsen earned acclaim as a record-setting quarterback for Brigham Young, then played five years in the NFL. Named all-America by several organizations in 1976, he led Division I with 29 touchdown passes and posted NCAA-best single-game totals that year in total offense (445 yards), passing yards (468) and touchdown passes (five), all set against Utah State.

The three-time all-Western Athletic Conference performer was the conference’s player of the year that season and finished sixth in Heisman Trophy voting. Nielsen set 13 WAC records during his football career. In 1977, he was named recipient of the Dale Rex Memorial Award, given annually to the person who has done the most for amateur athletics in Utah. In addition to his football career, Nielsen played basketball for Brigham Young in the 1974-75 season. The two-time member of the WAC’s all-academic team was an NCAA Today’s Top V winner and postgraduate scholarship recipient in 1977.

Selected Top Sportscaster by the Football Foundation Hall of Fame, Houston Chapter, Nielsen has worked as sports director at KHOU-TV in that city since 1984 and has served as a color commentator for NCAA football and basketball games. Nielsen was inducted into his alma mater’s athletics hall of fame in 1987, and into Utah’s sports hall of fame and summer games hall of fame in 1992.

A member of the executive board of the Houston Area Council for the Boy Scouts of America for 16 years, Nielsen received the highest honor bestowed by a local council of the BSA in 2002. He hosted the Giff Nielsen United Way Golf Tournament for 16 years and has raised more than $2.5 million for developing leadership qualities for youth in the Houston area. He also is the founding member and the first president of the BYU Varsity Club, for which he currently serves on the board of directors.