NFL to fund Tillman scholarships

Updated: June 9, 2010, 4:23 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

WASHINGTON -- The NFL announced Tuesday that it will help grow the number of Tillman Military Scholars from 52 to 112.

Kadi Tierney of the Pat Tillman Foundation said that the NFL is not funding all of the additional scholarships but a significant portion of them.

The scholarships are available to veteran and active service members who want to start, finish or continue their education. Dependents and survivors of service members are also eligible.

The scholarships average between $10,000 and $12,000 each, with about half going to spouses of veterans (to fill needs created when veterans return with injuries that force their spouses into more prominent earning roles, at which point further education becomes a big help).

The NFL will choose one scholarship recipient each year to represent the best of the Tillman Military Scholars.

Commissioner Roger Goodell says Tillman will always be a member of the NFL family.

Tillman gave up his NFL career with the Arizona Cardinals to enlist in the Army in 2002. He was killed while serving in Afghanistan in 2004.

Information from ESPN.com's Mike Sando and The Associated Press was used in this report.