Denne Freeman 1936-2023
His first collegiate football event for AP was the 1967 Texas A&M-Alabama Cotton Bowl. His career highlights included: coverage of the 1976 Montreal and 1984 Los Angeles Olympics and the 1975 Pan American Games in Mexico City; informing Roger Staubach that he had been selected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame; recording the first exclusive interview with
Tom Landry after his firing; reporting Nolan Ryan’s 7th No-Hitter, 5000th Strike Out, and the fight with Robin Ventura; standing on the clubhouse steps at the Old Course at St. Andrews while Arnold Palmer and Lee Trevino played their final round there; covering the 1997 Masters where Tiger won his first Major; covering Ben Crenshaw’s winning putt at the 1995 Masters. Honors include induction into the Texas A & M Journalism Hall of Fame, President of the Texas Sportswriters Association, and president of the Texas Golf Writers Association, and nomination for the Lifetime Achievement Award in the Texas Golf Hall of Fame. Denne is also a lifetime member of the Golf Writers Association of America and the Baseball Writers Association of America and a Heisman Trophy voter. He also serves as Chairman of the Texas Sports Hall of Fame Selection Committee.
In 1971, Denne won the AP National Award for his exclusive interview with Ben Hogan. He won the 1979 AP story of the year and was chosen Texas Sportswriter of the Year in 1980 by his peers of the National Sportscasters and Sportswriters Association for his coverage of the Bob Hayes trial. He received the 1980 Texas Headliners Award for his reporting of the Dallas Cowboys-Houston Oilers game. In 1989, he won the AP Staffer of the Year, the Press Club of Dallas Texas Katie Award-Individual Achievement, and the Texas Headliners Award for the first exclusive interview with Tom Landry after his firing. In 1995, he received the Press Club of Dallas Texas Katie Award for his reporting of the Dallas Cowboys NFC game. Denne is the author of three books: That Good Old Baylor Line, Hook'Em Horns, and I Remember Tom Landry. Denne, a Dallas native, graduated from Woodrow Wilson High School in 1955 and graduated from Texas A & M in 1959 with a degree in journalism. He was a reporter for the Battalion while attending A & M. He was commissioned a 2nd Lt upon graduation. He worked as a public information officer at Ft Lee, Va. Upon his return to Texas, he started his journalism career at the Terrell Tribune, followed by seven years with UPI, and 31 years with the AP.
Denne was inducted into the Texas Sports Hall Fame's second-ever Media class.
Watch Denne Freeman's TSHOF Media Hall of Fame Speech.
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