Student Athletes to Benefit from Scholarship
PRINCESS ANNE, MD-(November 22, 2010)Johnny Sample, who began and ended his colorful 11-year professional football career playing in two landmark games, will now officially be remembered closer to his athletic roots at Maryland State College, his alma mater.
A $10,000 gift to the school, now known as the University of Maryland Eastern Shore, establishes the John B. Sample Scholarship Fund. It will provide need-based financial aid for student-athletes who play intercollegiate sports at UMES.
“The Department of Athletics is forever grateful for the Sample family’s generosity. This gift is a fitting tribute to the memory of their father, Johnny Sample, a proud alum and a valued member of the university’s Athletics Hall of Fame,” said Keith Davidson, director of athletics, UMES. “The department will use this gift to help deserving student-athletes pursue their academic and athletic goals as well as preserving the legacy of athletic excellence Mr. Sample set while representing our institution.”
Evelyn Sample-Oates, her brother, Barkley, and sister, Sabrina, created the fund as a tribute to their late father, a 1958 graduate of the university.
“My father was my hero,” said Sample-Oates. “He loved this university and my brother and sister and I are happy to be able to start this fund in his memory to benefit a student-athlete,” Sample-Oates said.
As a rookie defensive back with Baltimore, Sample played in the historic 1958 championship game where the Colts defeated the New York Giants 23-17. The game, often referred to as “The Greatest Game Ever Played,” was the first in professional football to go into overtime.
In his final season, Sample made an interception for the New York Jets in their 16-7 win over the Colts in the AFL-NFL Championship Game, the first time the term “Super Bowl” was used. The Jets’ victory is considered one of the greatest upsets in American sports history.
Sample died April 26, 2005, the only professional football player to win championship rings playing in the old National Football League, the defunct American Football League and the Super Bowl. He also played professionally for the Pittsburgh Steelers and Washington Redskins.
According to Kimberly Dumpson J.D., UMES’ director of alumni affairs and planned giving, the fund is open to receive additional gifts. Sample-Oates started the fund with a $10,000 pledge. Endowed funds at UMES must reach $10,000 before scholarship monies are dispersed.
For more information, contact Dumpson at 410-651-7686 or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Caption: Kimberly Dumpson J.D., director of alumni affairs and planned giving at UMES, at left, accepts a check for $10,000 benefitting student-athletes from Evelyn Sample-Oates, daughter of the late Johnny Sample, professional football player and Maryland State alumnus.
Gail Stephens, assistant director, UMES Office of Public Relations, 410-651-7580, email@example.com.
Bill Robinson, director, UMES Office of Public Relations, 410-621-2355, firstname.lastname@example.org.