Jumbos to Host 4th Annual Tufts Football Kickoff Event on Thursday

MEDFORD - This coming Thursday night (September 13), the Tufts University football team will host its 4th Annual Tufts Football Kickoff Event at the Collaborative Learning and Innovation Complex (CLIC) located at 574 Boston Ave., on the Medford campus starting at 7:30 pm.

John Baronian Distinguished Jumbo Football Award recipient Jay Calnan

Among the festivities celebrating the dawn of a new Tufts Football season, the Jumbos will present the John Baronian Distinguished Jumbo Football Award to Jay Calnan that evening. A 1987 Tufts graduate who was a captain of the Jumbos, Calnan is a founding member and leader of the Friends of Tufts Football (FTFB) organization.

Also that evening, Tufts head coach Jay Civetti and 2018 captains Alex LaPiana, Ryan McDonald and Greg Holt will speak about the upcoming season. Zack Cummings, the Jumbos' inspirational Team IMPACT teammate, will be visiting. Tufts will also honor the life of Mike Pimentel, the founder of Tufts' strength and conditioning program who passed away recently at the age of 52.

Prior to the event, the team is inviting all guests to an open practice at Ellis Oval / Zimman Field along with a social hour at Baronian Fieldhouse starting at 5 pm on Thursday.

The John Baronian Distinguished Jumbo Football Award recognizes a person of high character, who has shown ardent interest in and passion for the game of football and Tufts University, and demonstrated invaluable leadership traits and qualities while contributing to the betterment of Tufts Football, Jumbo football student-athletes, and the greater Tufts University community.

Jay Calnan has been all of that and more during his playing days and in the years since. He was a co-captain and a fiesty defensive back on the 1986 Tufts team that finished 7-1 and won the New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) championship. Calnan earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering with a Minor in Management from Tufts and has since built a successful career in the engineering and construction industry. He is currently the Chief Executive Officer of J. Calnan & Associates, Inc.

A member of the Athletics Board of Advisors at Tufts, Calnan was at the forefront when the Friends of Tufts Football was established. FTFB works to create the best intercollegiate football experience in the NESCAC for Jumbo football players, coaches, alumni, parents, friends and members of the university by engaging these groups to support the current team and coaches. Along with this kick-off event, FTFB is also sponsoring Tufts' second night football game coming up against Wesleyan on September 22. The group also endeavors to support the football program's operational needs in order to give the Jumbos every opportunity to be an elite team in the conference.

Calnan has also been a long-time supporter of the football program in addition to actively participating in the team’s annual career and alumni networking nights. He is a member of the Tufts Football Oval Club, the de facto group of advisors for head coach Jay Civetti.

Along with other Tufts classmates Calnan is a founding member of Team IMPACT, the non-profit organization whose mission is to connect and cultivate meaningful relationships between college athletic teams and children diagnosed with life-threatening illnesses. In addition to Tufts Football teammate Zack Cummings, Tufts is one of Team IMPACT's strongest collaborators with 13 pairings in all.

If you'd like to attend this week's event, please RSVP to football@tufts.edu. For more information, contact Mark Adzigian at 617-627-0376 or mark.adzigian@tufts.edu.

The Jumbos open the 2018 season at Hamilton College on Saturday, September 15 at 1 p.m.