The Ohio State University Alumni Club of Los Angeles (OSULA) held its Annual Kickoff BBQ/General Meeting once again at the beautiful Calabasas Country Club on Saturday, August 29, 2015 featuring former Ohio State star running back Jeff Logan as guest speaker and honoring Buckeye legend and College Football Hall of Fame quarterback Rex Kern, who both shared stories of Buckeye lore from generations past and inspired attendees with thoughts about Ohio State’s promising future. The festivities were attended by approximately 170 Buckeye alumni, family, friends and enthusiasts, including former Buckeye standout linebacker and captain Rowland Tatum (1981-83, All-Big Ten First Team, 6th Rd. NFL Draft Pick/Miami) and running back Maurice Hall (2001-04, Academic All-Big Ten, 2002 National Champion).
A native of Lancaster, Ohio and a current resident of Southern California, Kern attended the event with wife Nancy, who he first met when she was a Rose Bowl Princess. Rex was recognized as the second OSULA Legends Award winner, following the incomparable Archie Griffin who was presented with the first such honor in 2014.
Kern originally committed to play both basketball for Fred Taylor and football for Woody Hayes at Ohio State, but suffered a back injury during freshman basketball and devoted the rest of his collegiate career to football after being named the starting quarterback in 1968.
With Kern at signal-caller, Ohio State compiled a 27-2 record, captured the 1968 National Championship, won two Big Ten titles and played in two Rose Bowls. To win the national championship, Kern led OSU to a 27-16 win over Southern California in the Rose Bowl, and was named the game’s Most Outstanding Player. Additionally, the Buckeyes narrowly missed out on the 1969 and ’70 wire service national championships, losing the last game of the year in both of those seasons after being ranked No. 1 going into their respective season finales. In 1969, he was named an All-American, and in 1970, he was elected team captain.
After college, Kern was drafted in the 10th Round of the 1971 NFL Draft by the NFL champion Baltimore Colts. As a defensive, he played in all 14 games of his rookie season of 1971, but only five in 1972 after a recurrence of his back injury. He played one more season for the Colts in ’73, before being traded to Buffalo for the final eight games of his career, hanging up his cleats for medical reasons.
Kern was elected to the Ohio State Varsity O Hall of Fame in 1978, was selected to the Ohio State Football All-Century Team in 2000, and inducted to the College Football Hall of Fame in 2007. All told, Kern earned three degrees from Ohio State, a bachelor’s, master’s and ultimately a doctorate of philosophy. He founded the Anne and Woody Hayes Endowment for the prevention of child abuse at Columbus Children’s Hospital in 2001.
Logan attended the OSULA Kickoff BBQ with his wife Dena (Barry), a three-year OSU varsity cheerleader. He spoke to attendees about his storied tenure at Ohio State (1974-1977) and how he thinks the defending National Champion Buckeye football team will fare in 2015-16. Logan served his first two campaigns as back-up running back to Archie Griffin, but in 1976, stepped out of Archie’s shadow to become Ohio State’s star running back for the following two seasons. He was very instrumental in leading Ohio State to four consecutive Big Ten Championships and four bowl games during his illustrious career. He also was recognized as co-captain, Academic All-American, Big Ten All-Academic, and All-Big Ten first-team running back in 1977. Logan became just the second person in Ohio State football history to rush for over 1,200 yards in a regular season (1976), with 1,248 on 218 carries and six touchdowns in 12 games, for an average of 104.0 yards per game.
Logan has had an extraordinary professional career since graduating from Ohio State in 1978 with a bachelor’s degree in journalism and public relations. Among his many accomplishments are serving as color analyst for The Ohio State Radio Network from 1999-2005. He also is one of the founding members of the “The Logan Family Foundation” which benefits children and their families in Start County, Columbus and Ashland, Ohio.
Logan currently is a financial advisor with New England Financial and has been an advisor since 1980. He served 12 years on the Varsity “O” Alumni Board where he is a Past-President. He served on the selection committee for the hiring of Jim Tressel, and has been invited by current football coach Urban Meyer to speak to the football team about the transition into “real-life” after football. Currently, he resides in Dublin, Ohio, is actively involved with Jack Nicklaus’ Memorial Tournament and is a two-time former club champion at Muirfield Village.
Following dinner, OSULA also auctioned off two special items.
Winning the Autographed Football by our legendary two-time Heisman Trophy winner, the one and only, Archie Griffin was Christina Sistrunk.
Winners of the second item — Two Tickets to the marquee game on the Ohio State home schedule — Michigan State – on Nov. 21 in our club’s excellent President Club seats located near the 10-yard line in A Deck was Paul Rehder for $700.
Guest speaker Jeff Logan was so impressed with the inspired bidding for OSULA’s Presidents Club tickets that he offered up the personal OSU-Michigan State tickets of he and his wife Dena to runner-up bidders Derrick McCann and Nicole Pflester for the same $700… all benefiting the OSULA Scholarship and Endowment Fund.
The Annual OSULA Kickoff BBQ also featured a 50/50 raffle. The winning all-cash prize of $500, a nice return on investment for the ticket price, was won by a first-time attendee and Pasadena peace officer Joshua, with the other half benefiting the OSULA Scholarship and Endowment Fund.
Check out the photo gallery from this year’s Annual OSULA Kickoff BBQ here: https://www.flickr.com/photos/134401742@N05/sets/72157657540749698
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