BERLIN — The Atlantic Physical Therapy 2017 “Tough Guy of the Year” award went to Stephen Decatur varsity football standout Justin Manganiello during a special ceremony last week.
For the last 17 years, the Atlantic Physical Therapy (APT) “Tough Guy of the Week” has graced the sports pages of The Dispatch and this year was no different. Most of the accolades in football are reserved for the glamour guys, the golden-armed quarterbacks and fleet running backs who put points on the board and thrill the crowds, but the weekly “Tough Guy” award is handed out to the Decatur player who best exemplifies Seahawk football on and off the field.
Started in 2000 by APT President Bob Hammond, the weekly “Tough Guy” award acknowledges the efforts of an individual player, or sometimes a unit on the team, that do the little things to help the team that don’t necessarily show up in the box score. Each week, APT presents a handsome trophy to the winner along with special recognition in The Dispatch.
At the end of the year, the player deemed most deserving by his coaches is rewarded with the “Tough Guy of the Year” award and along with a tall, multi-tiered trophy. This year, the “Tough Guy of the Year” award went to Justin Manganiello for his consistent play throughout the season as the Seahawks finished with a respectable 4-6 record after going 1-9 last year.
Weekly “Tough Guy” awards this season went in order of the weeks played to Sam Todd, Cameron Bradshaw, Jyhmir Blake, Bryce Kalchthaler, Manganiello, Shea Griffin, Tyquan Briddell, Todd again and Bradshaw again.