Monday, January 25, 2010

Stephenson, Tatupu & Fanene Named Honorary Captains for Team U.S.A. vs. the World Game

USA Football, the sport’s national governing body on youth and amateur levels, announced today that Pro Football Hall of Famer and former Miami Dolphins centerDWIGHT STEPHENSON will join former NFL All-Star MOSI TATUPU and Cincinnati Bengals defensive lineman JONATHAN FANENE as honorary captains for USA Football’s “Team USA vs. The World” game, presented by Riddell, at Lockhart Stadium in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., on Saturday, Jan. 30 at 12 p.m. ET.

The game will be televised live by NFL Network.

USA Football’s 2010 Junior National Team – 45 of the country’s top high school seniors – will face a World Select team composed of the best players aged 19 and under from outside the United States spanning eight countries on four continents. Showcasing the world’s top high school-aged players from across the globe, the Jan. 30 contest will follow AFC and NFC All-Star practices at Lockhart Stadium. Admission to the NFL All-Star practices and “Team USA vs. The World” game is free of charge.

Stephenson is the honorary captain of USA Football’s Junior National Team (Team USA). Considered among the finest centers in NFL history, the former Dolphin (1980-87) was enshrined into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1998. Coached by legends PAUL “BEAR” BRYANT (Alabama) and DON SHULA (Miami Dolphins), Stephenson played in five Pro Bowls (1982-87) and helped the Dolphins advance to two Super Bowls (1982, ’84 seasons). Stephenson and his wife, Dinah, founded The Dwight Stephenson Foundation in 2007 which generates funding for various charitable organizations including The Urban League of Broward County (Fla.).

Tatupu and Fanene, both American Samoan natives, will share honorary captain duties for the World team, which features three American Samoan players including Aiulua Fanene, Jonathan’s younger brother.

Tatupu was the first American Samoan to play in a Pro Bowl (1986). The four-year Southern Cal. letter winner played 14 NFL seasons (1978-91) as a fullback for the New England Patriots and Los Angeles Rams and was part of the 1986 Patriots team which advanced to Super Bowl XX. Tatupu is the father of Seattle Seahawks standout linebacker LOFA TATUPU.

A veteran of five NFL seasons – all with Cincinnati – Fanene was born in Pago Pago, American Samoa. Fanene played in all 16 games for the AFC North champion Bengals this season, registering a career-high 36 tackles, 6.0 sacks, and an interception which he returned 45 yards for a touchdown.

Calling the action on Jan. 30 for NFL Network’s live 12 p.m. ET telecast will be RICH EISENDEION SANDERS, and SCOTT KENNEDY. Sideline reporter STACEY DALES will contribute on-field insight.

For more on USA Football's "Team USA vs. The World" game, presented by Riddell, visit

About USA FootballUSA Football, the sport 's national governing body on youth and amateur levels, hosts more than 80 football training events annually offering education for coaches and game officials, skill development for players and resources for youth football league commissioners. The independent non-profit is the official youth football development partner of the NFL, its 32 teams and the NFL Players Association. USA Football also manages U.S. national teams within the sport for international competitions. Endowed by the NFL and NFLPA in 2002 through the NFL Youth Football Fund, USA Football ( is chaired by former NFL team executive Carl Peterson.

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