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The University of Alabama

Bryant Alumni-Athlete Award Presented to Three Former UA Players

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – Three former University of Alabama standout athletes have received the 2011 Paul W. Bryant Alumni-Athlete Award.

Clark Boler of Marietta, Ga., Lt. Col. Howard Pierson of Novato, Calif., and Tommy Brooker of Tuscaloosa were presented the prestigious award on Sept. 3 at halftime of the UA vs. Kent State football game in Tuscaloosa.

Tommy Brooker, Lt. Col. Howard Pierson and Clark Boler

The award is presented by the UA National Alumni Association to former athletes whose accomplishments have been outstanding based on character, contributions to society, professional achievement and service.


Clark Boler – Boler came to UA in 1961 on a full scholarship for football and won a national championship under Coach Paul “Bear” Bryant the same season. He also pitched for the Tide’s baseball team and played on the basketball team his freshman year. During his 42-year teaching career, he coached both high school and college sports, won numerous championships and saw many of his high school players receive full scholarships to play college sports. He retired in 2007.

Lt. Col. Howard Pierson – After attending the University for three years and participating in Air Force ROTC, Pierson enlisted and served in the military from 1951–1979. He returned to Alabama in 1981 to complete his bachelor’s degree in physical education. A letterman in football and track, Pierson was also involved in Calvary Baptist Church’s College and University Ministry. During his military career, he received 39 Air Medals, a Meritorious Service Medal and an Airman’s Medal for Valor.

Tommy Brooker – After entering UA in 1958 on a football scholarship, he was honored as an Academic All-American player before graduating with his bachelor’s degree in 1962 and a master’s degree in 1964. He went on to play with the Dallas Texans (now known as the Kansas City Chiefs) and was inducted into the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame in 2009. Brooker is the president and founder of the Alabama “A” Club Educational and Charitable Foundation.

Past recipients of the UA NAA Paul W. Bryant Alumni-Athlete Award are:

1988 – John Croyle

1989 – Young Boozer

1990 – Charlie Boswell

1991 – Fred Sington

1992 – Hoyt “Wu” Winslett

1993 – Holt Rast, Tom Rast

1994 – Bart Starr

1995 – Bud Moore

1996 – Ozzie Newsome

1997 – Jerry Duncan

1998 – Dwight Stephenson

1999 – Lee Roy Jordan

2000 – Joe Kelley, Wendell Hudson

2001 – Dr. Andrew Burch, Jack McKewen

2002 – Harry Lee, I. L. “Pat” O’Sullivan Jr.

2003 – Harry Gilmer, Don Salls

2004 – Jeremiah Castille, William E. Sexton

2005 – Bill Battle, Dr. Noah Langdale Jr.

2006 – Jim Loftin Sr., Bobby Luna, Mal Moore

2007 – Clem Gryska, Cecil “Hootie” Ingram

2008 – Barbara Mack Harding, George A. McCain Jr., Ben W. McLeod Jr.

2009 – Jerry Belk, Jack V. Brown Sr.

2010 – Randy Billingsley, Rev. Colenzo “Rock” Hubbard



The University of Alabama, a student-centered research university, is experiencing significant growth in both enrollment and academic quality. This growth, which is positively impacting the campus and the state's economy, is in keeping with UA's vision to be the university of choice for the best and brightest students. UA, the state's flagship university, is an academic community united in its commitment to enhancing the quality of life for all Alabamians.