CUA honors pair of alums with Bottoni and McManes awards

WASHINGTON – A pair of former Catholic University football players were honored prior to the Cardinals' football game vs. Washington and Lee on Friday, October 29. 

Jim Gehringer of Chalfont, Pa. was honored with the Anthony J. Bottoni Leadership Award, and Tommie Roberson of Gainesville, Fla., received the Ronnie McManes Award.

The Anthony J. Bottoni Leadership Award was established in 2000 to honor the CUA football team's outstanding senior leader. Gehringer exemplified exceptional leadership skills on and off the field. A four-year starter at center, Gehringer anchored the Cardinals offensive line and was named first-team All-Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC) in 2009. 

Gehringer graduated in 2010 with a degree in history and marketing.

The Ronnie McManes Award was established in 1998 to honor the "CUA football player who has risen above adversity to excel athletically and academically." Roberson was a four-year member of the Cardinals and started all 10 games as a senior at defensive back.

During 2009, Roberson totaled 23 tackles, including one for-loss, three pass breakups and a forced fumble.  He appeared in 23 games throughout his career and was also a key part of the DC Reads program during his time as a student-athlete.

Roberson earned his bachelor's degree in psychology in 2010 and is currently pursuing his MBA at CUA, while also helping out the football program as a defensive backs coach.

Gehringer and Roberson helped the Cardinals share the 2008 ODAC championship and win their first postseason game in 73 years.

The Bottoni Award is named in honor of Anthony J. Bottoni, a two-year (1998-99) starting right guard for the Cardinals who was killed in an automobile collision Dec. 28, 1999. Just a month prior, Bottoni helped CUA win its first league football championship with a 6-0 record in the ODAC. The 6-foot, 277-pounder played on three consecutive NCAA playoff teams (1997-99) that went 29-4 (.879) during his college career.

The McManes Award is named in honor of former Cardinal Coach Ronnie McManes, who in 1965 helped to rejuvenate football at CUA by becoming the school's first head football coach in 15 years. McManes (mick-maynz) had previously coached football, baseball, basketball and track for the No. 12 Metropolitan Police Boys Club in Washington, D.C. Former University of Notre Dame President, the Rev. Edward A. "Monk" Malloy, is among the boys club players he coached.