Wednesday, October 9, 2013
The Citadel will play host to a premier sporting event in the form of a postseason college all-star game as The Medal of Honor Bowl, “A Celebration of Heroes,” takes place on Jan. 11 at Johnson Hagood Stadium.
“This is a tremendous announcement for the Charleston area - to host a major sporting event that will honor our nation’s military heroes. I couldn’t be happier,” South Carolina District 15 Representative Dr. Samuel Rivers III (R-Goose Creek) said. “After looking at many different possibilities to bring postseason football here, this all-star format emerged as the best event for the entire community and state. I like that this is a long-term commitment and that the beneficiaries are the Medal of Honor Museum Foundation and the Wounded Warriors Program. Every citizen of this state should be proud.”
The game will showcase many of the nation’s top NFL draft-eligible college football players and will feature a bowl-like atmosphere with a full week of events culmination with the game on Saturday.
“The Medal of Honor Bowl will bring professional-level football to South Carolina while promoting Charleston to the sports world and generating substantial economic impact,” Tom McQueeney, chairman of the local organizing committee of the Charleston Area Sports Commission, said. “What better place, atmosphere and reason to celebrate could there be? This is the ‘home base’ to the greatest heroes in America.”
McQueeney, a native Charlestonian, also announced that Brian Woods will serve as the game’s executive director. Woods will evaluate players, set the rosters and oversee the day-to-day operations.
“Brian has the makeup to be an NFL general manager with his law degree and thorough understanding of player personnel,” McQueeney noted. “He has been a major reason in attracting the all-star format that may bring as many as 300 NFL scouts into the area for the week-long practice sessions. We also look to highlight the best in-state players from Clemson, the University of South Carolina and our other top programs.”
The Medal of Honor Bowl has been a marriage of community and national partners.
The Congressional Medal of Honor Society recently met in Gettysburg, Pa. Their national board and president later approved the naming of the football event and expressed appreciation for the proposed assistance to their recently announced new museum project. Funds for the project will be directed to the Medal of Honor Museum Foundation.
“We welcome this event for the community, state and country to enjoy,” Hal Fritz, president of the Medal of Honor Society and one of only 79 living recipients of the Medal of Honor, said. “We also appreciate that our headquarters are in the community and that the bowl committee has designated us as a most appropriate reason to celebrate the true meaning of freedom and the sacrifices so many have made.”
The Medal of Honor Bowl will utilize a unique selection process geared at landing more of the nation’s top draft eligible seniors. Rosters will be based upon the NFL market for which the player’s school resides in as opposed to traditional North-South or East-West formats.
“For the last 15 years, the Southeast has provided more players to the NFL draft than any other part of the country,” Woods said. “It makes sense to utilize a format which allows us to award more roster spots to players from that region.”