Evening will honor Jerry Sloan with a Lifetime Achievement Award

6th ANNUAL GOVERNOR’S STATE OF SPORT AWARDS EVENT TO HONOR UTAH’S SPORTS ACHIEVEMENTSSalt Lake City, UT, February 21, 2017– Governor Gary R. Herbert and guests will celebrate Utah’s best athletic achievements for the 2016 calendar year at the 6th annual Governor’s State of Sport Awards dinner to be held Thursday, April 13 from 7:00 to 9:00 p.m. at Vivint Smart Home Arena.

Governor Herbert will present special awards to those who have achieved excellence in sport in the state of Utah and recognize the important role sports and the sports industry plays in Utah.


“Sports are a significant part of Utah’s cultural identity.  Each year, hundreds of thousands throughout the state gather to witness sporting events of all sorts, celebrating athleticism and excellence,” said Gov. Herbert. “We are honored to pay tribute to one of the most respected coaches in NBA history, Jerry Sloan, as we present him with the Lifetime Achievement Award.”


Over his 23 seasons at the helm of the Utah Jazz, Hall of Fame head coach Jerry Sloan guided Utah to 19 playoff appearances, two NBA Finals (1997, 1998), seven division titles, a streak of 16 consecutive winning seasons (1988-2004), 13 seasons with 50-plus wins and three with 60-plus wins, while suffering only one losing season.


Sloan is one of nine coaches in NBA history to have surpassed 1,000 regular season victories (1,221) and is one of only two coaches (Gregg Popovich is the other) to have won 1,000 games with one franchise. Sloan ranks third all-time in most wins by an NBA Head Coach, fourth all-time in regular season games coached (2,024) and fourth all-time in playoff games coached (202).


The Jazz raised a banner with 1223 (number of regular season and playoff games won under Sloan) in 2014. He was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 2009.


“With Gov. Herbert as our host, the annual State of Sport Awards will be a wonderful celebration of sports in Utah and a tribute to Jerry Sloan who is such a part of our identity as a coach and leader,” said Gail Miller, owner of the Larry H. Miller Group of Companies. “It will be a special evening with his family, friends, and colleagues to honor him with a Lifetime Achievement Award.”

Sloan originally joined the Jazz as a scout during the 1983-84 season, then following a brief stint as a head coach in the Continental Basketball Association, re-joined the Jazz as an assistant coach to Frank Layden on Nov. 19, 1984, where he remained until being promoted to head coach following Layden’s resignation in December of 1988.


Prior to joining the Jazz, Sloan served as head coach of the Chicago Bulls from 1979-82 following an 11-year playing career with Baltimore and Chicago, during which he was twice selected an NBA All-Star.


In addition to the Lifetime Achievement Award, the Governor will present two additional awards new to the event, the Lewis Feild Bareback Riding Award, and the Legends Award.


The Days of ‘47 Komatsu Rodeo along with Spanish Fork Fiesta Days Rodeo and the Ogden Pioneer Days Rodeo have joined together to posthumously honor Lewis Feild, the 5-time world champion cowboy from the great state of Utah, by annually awarding the outstanding bareback rider at all three rodeos.


Rodeo has a long and rich history in the state of Utah and there is perhaps no better example of our Western sports heritage than Lewis Feild. It’s our pleasure, on behalf of the Spanish Fork Rodeo and the Ogden Pioneer Rodeo, to honor one of Utah’s most accomplished athletes and to carry his legacy forward through the annual Lewis Feild Bareback Riding Award,” said Dan Shaw, president and CEO of the Days of ’47 Cowboy Games & Rodeo.


LaVell Edwards will be posthumously honored for his contribution to sport in the state of Utah with the event’s “Legends Award”.  A successful coach at Brigham Young University, LaVell retired with 257 wins, a National Championship, 19 conference championships, numerous All-Americans, 4 Davey O’Brien trophy winners, 2 Outland Trophy winners, and a Heisman Trophy winner.


“As the presenting sponsor of the Governor’s State of Sport Awards, we are pleased to introduce the Legends Award and are honored to recognize our dear friend, LaVell Edwards, for his legendary life and his enduring contributions as an ambassador of our state around the world,” said Rob Brough, executive vice president at Zions Bank.


The Governor’s State of Sport Awards, hosted by the Utah Sports Commission and presented by Zions Bank, celebrate Utah’s sports community and honors excellence in high school, amateur, collegiate, adaptive, Olympic and professional sports. Sports fans will have the opportunity to vote for their favorite athletes, coaches, players, plays and events. The event also recognizes key sports partners who have been instrumental in helping to build Utah’s sports industry.

“The Utah Sports Commission is excited to host the 6th annual Utah ‘fan’s choice’ award event that will allow sports fans and citizens in Utah to have a voice in selecting and recognizing those who inspire, entertain and thrill them,” said Jeff Robbins, president and CEO of the Utah Sports Commission.  “We could not create this event without the help of our terrific partners.”

Nominees will be announced and voting is scheduled to begin the first part of March, at which time, fans can visit www.stateofsportawards.com to vote for the best athletic achievement in each category.

To purchase tables or sponsorship information, call the Utah Sports Commission at 801-328-2372.

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