Football Writers Association of America Feb. 2, 2004
For Immediate Release
Contact: Steve Richardson
Newest Hall of Famer served Cincinnati Post for over 34 years

DALLAS (FWAA) Pat Harmon, longtime Cincinnati Post sports editor and current historian for the National Football Foundation and the College Football Hall of Fame, has won the 2004 Bert McGrane Award.

Pat Harmon

Harmon was selected as the winner by a panel of previous McGrane Award winners. He will receive a plaque and special recognition during a breakfast at the College Football Hall of Fame in South Bend, Ind., this coming August.

The Bert McGrane Award, which serves as the Football Writers Association of America Hall of Fame, was established in 1974. The award honors an FWAA member who has performed great service to the organization and the game of college football. It is named after McGrane, who was the executive secretary of the organization from the early 1940s until 1973.

Harmon, a father of 11 children, was president of the FWAA in 1984. He has had an illustrious career as a sports writer and editor and covered such greats as Vince Lombardi, Pete Rose, Casey Stengel, Arnold Palmer, Eddie Robinson, John Wooden, Bear Bryant, Jack Nicklaus, Woody Hayes, Paul Brown and Joe Louis.

Harmon's career started when he was a young sports writer in Illinois. Harmon began covering events at age 17 at the Freeport (Ill.) Journal Standard during the Depression era of the early 1930s. He would hitchhike to games, sleep on wrestling mats in gyms of teams he covered, and also break into the food lines of the teams.

But he will be forever remembered for inaugurating the selection of the Illinois all-state high school football and basketball teams.

Harmon moved to the Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette in 1934 when became a student at the University of Illinois. And he stayed in that central Illinois town, married his wife Anne, and built a strong reputation before spending four years at the Cedar Rapids (Iowa) Gazette from 1947-51.

Harmon went to Cincinnati in 1951 and served as a sports editor and columnist for the Post for 34 1/2 years. After retiring and traveling for a year, Harmon settled in his current job as historian in 1986.

Harmon's name also will be placed on a plaque in the rotunda of the College Football Hall of Fame with the previous McGrane Award winners.

Related link:
Bert McGrane Award