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University of Bolton gives Sam Allardyce doctorate
Sam Allardyce
Sam said he is "very proud to receive the doctorate"

Blackburn Rovers manager Sam Allardyce has been awarded an honorary doctorate from the University of Bolton.

The newly-titled Dr Allardyce has a long association with the town's football club, Bolton Wanderers, where he served as a player and a manager.

Despite leaving the club in 2007, he has retained close ties to the area and still lives in the town.

He said that his new title "sounds rather nice" but that he expects to be "ribbed" by his footballing colleagues.

He told BBC Radio Manchester that he'd be "very pleased to take the stick because I'm very proud to receive the doctorate."

Adding: "I can't see some of my friends ringing up and saying 'is Doctor Sam in?'"

Born in Dudley in 1954, Sam Allardyce joined Bolton Wanderers in 1969 and played 184 games for them before leaving to join Sunderland in 1980.

I've fulfilled many dreams in this town and I've given people great memories, so for the University to honour me with this doctorate is a great pleasure
Sam Allardyce

He then returned for a second spell with The Trotters, playing 14 games for the Wanderers in the 1985-86 season.

After leaving again, 'Big Sam', as he was affectionately known to supporters, came back for a third stint at the club, this time as manager between 1999 and 2007.

He said that "everyone in football knows that it's my adopted town."

"I'm still living here, now I'm working at Blackburn, and I never really lost the family home in Bolton.

"It all started for me 40 years ago when I came to Bolton as a youngster from school.

"I've fulfilled many dreams in this town and I've given people, I hope, great dreams and great memories.

"So for the University to honour me with this doctorate is a great pleasure."

Others being honoured with awards at the University's graduation ceremonies include Bolton-raised Nobel Prize winner, Sir Harry Kroto, and former Bolton South East MP Dr Brian Iddon, who helped the institution come into being when it changed from Bolton Institute in 2004.





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