NEW YORK – The National Football League (NFL) and Arrow Electronics (NYSE:ARW) announced on Tuesday the launch of 1st and Future, the NFL’s annual Super Bowl competition designed to spur innovation in athlete safety and performance. 1st and Future will be presented by Arrow Electronics and hosted at Georgia Institute of Technology (Georgia Tech) at the Ferst Center for the Arts in Atlanta, Georgia on February 2, 2019, the day before Super Bowl LIII.
This year’s event will feature two categories of competition. The first category, the NFL Punt Analytics Competition, is new this year and will give applicants access to exclusive NFL data sets to inform creative submissions about rule changes designed to reduce player injury during punt plays. This challenge will utilize the crowdsourced data science platform Kaggle. Up to four of the best submissions will be awarded $20,000 each. The winning teams will be invited to present their submission in Atlanta, where they will compete to win Super Bowl tickets.
“Leveraging available data to analyze the game is an increasingly essential way to improve our rules and look to make the game safer,” said JEFF MILLER, NFL Executive Vice President of Health and Safety Initiatives. “This is a groundbreaking new effort to ask the public to analyze our rules and make recommendations. We are excited to tap into the innovative thinking of data scientists and entrepreneurs.”
The second category, Innovations to Advance Athlete Health and Safety Competition, invites all types of submissions for innovative product concepts that could improve player health and safety and will be managed by Georgia Tech’s Advanced Technology Development Center (ATDC). Up to five start-ups will be selected as finalists and will have the chance to present their innovations on stage in Atlanta. One grand prize winner will be awarded $50,000 and two tickets to Super Bowl LIII. The second-place winner will receive $20,000 and two tickets to Super Bowl LIII.
Finalists for both categories will present to a panel of judges and an exclusive audience including NFL team owners and executives, and representatives from the Atlanta Super Bowl Host Committee, Arrow Electronics and Georgia Tech.
“We are seeing technology reach a threshold that opens up a whole new class of opportunities to improve the health and performance of athletes,” said VICTOR GAO, chief marketing officer of Arrow Electronics. “Innovation begins with a single idea, and we are proud to support 1st and Future that draws upon the ingenuity of entrepreneurs to enhance the quality of life for not only professionals in the stadium but also aspiring young athletes at home.”
“Georgia Tech is proud to host the NFL’s 1st and Future start-up competition,” said Georgia Tech President G.P. “BUD” PETERSON. “This event will tap into the robust start-up culture and entrepreneurial spirit for which the Institute is well known. An embodiment of those traits, our Advanced Technology Development Center (ATDC), is located on campus in Tech Square, one of the nation’s most exciting entrepreneurial ecosystems. Yellow Jacket fans love our sports teams, and the opportunity to partner with the NFL to advance collaborative innovation in athletics, particularly around safety and performance, is one we wholeheartedly endorse.”
About the NFL’s Health and Safety Initiatives
The NFL is committed to advancing progress in the diagnosis, prevention and treatment of sports-related injuries. As part of the NFL’s ongoing health and safety efforts, in September 2016, Commissioner Goodell launched Play Smart. Play Safe. — a league-wide health and safety initiative. At the heart of the initiative is a pledge of $100 million in support for independent medical research and engineering advancements and a commitment to look at anything and everything to protect our players and make our game safer, including enhancements to medical protocols and improvements to how our game is taught and played. For more information about the NFL’s health and safety efforts, please visit www.PlaySmartPlaySafe.com.
About Arrow Electronics
Arrow Electronics guides innovation forward for over 150,000 of the world’s leading manufacturers of technology used in homes, business and daily life. With 2017 sales of $26.6 billion, Arrow aggregates electronics and enterprise computing solutions for customers and suppliers in industrial and commercial markets. The company maintains a network of more than 345 locations serving over 80 countries. Learn more at FiveYearsOut.com.
About the Georgia Institute of Technology
The Georgia Institute of Technology, also known as Georgia Tech, is one of the nation’s leading research universities. Georgia Tech provides a focused, technologically based education to more than 32,000 undergraduate and graduate students. Georgia Tech has many nationally recognized programs, all top-ranked by peers and publications alike, and is ranked in the nation’s top 10 public universities by U.S. News and World Report. As a leading technological university, Georgia Tech has more than 100 centers focused on interdisciplinary research that consistently contribute vital research and innovation to American government, industry, and business.
About the Advanced Technology Development Center
The Advanced Technology Development Center (ATDC), a program of the Georgia Institute of Technology, is the state of Georgia’s technology start-up incubator. Founded in 1980 by the Georgia General Assembly which funds it each year, ATDC’s mission is to work with entrepreneurs in Georgia to help them learn, launch, scale, and succeed in the creation of viable, disruptive technology companies. Since its founding, ATDC has grown to become one of the longest running and most successful university-affiliated incubators in the United States, with its graduate start-up companies raising $3 billion in investment financing and generating more than $12 billion in revenue in the state of Georgia. To learn more, visit atdc.org.