By Anthony McClean, Editor In Chief Emeritus NEW HAVEN (BASN) —...
East Prevails In U.S. Army All-American Bowl
SAN ANTONIO — At the beginning of a week-long series of practice sessions, Coach Robert Prunty (Hargrave Military Academy, Chatham, VA) told his East U.S. Army All-American Bowl players that “When the pupil is ready, the teacher will appear. If you are willing to accept who you are as a player, you will be who you are.”
His team listened and responded by giving Coach Prunty a 33-23 victory over the West squad. Prunty became only the second African American head coach to win the prestigious game in its eight-year existence.
The game featured a stellar performance by quarterback Terrelle Pryor (Jeannette Senior High School, Jeanette, Pa). Pryor was named the game’s Most Valuable Player after running six yards for one touchdown and throwing for 25 yards for another TD.
Pryor finished the game with 76 yards passing and his 79 yards rushing rank him third all-time in the eight-year history of the U.S. Army All-American Bowl. He was also selected for the Player of the Year award which was presented to him during a pre-game awards dinner held on Friday evening.
The eighth annual U.S. Army All-American Bowl is the premier high school football game that connects the strengths of the nation’s top players with those of Army Strong Soldiers, emphasizing the skills and values learned on the football field and in the Army. The match-up was played at the Alamodome and was televised last Saturday, nationwide on NBC.
Since its inception, the U.S. Army All-American Bowl has been considered the nation’s most prestigious All-American game by high school football players, coaches, and fans from across the country, as it’s the preeminent launching pad for America’s future college and NFL stars.
Reggie Bush (New Orleans Saints), Vince Young (Tennessee Titans), Adrian Peterson (Minnesota Vikings) Teddy Ginn, Jr. (Miami Dolphins) and Kevin Jones (Detroit Lions) all made their national debuts as U.S. Army All-Americans. Current college standouts DeSean Jackson (California wide receiver/kick returner) and Chris Wells (Ohio State running back) are also among this elite group.
More than 400 players are initially nominated nationally for U.S. Army All-American honors. That group is ultimately refined to 96 players by the U.S. Army All-American Bowl Selection Committee consisting of Tom Lemming, Scout.com and SportsLink. 78 players played in the game.
“A U.S. Army All-American selection is a very important honor; it is a testament to the hard work, dedication and team work that they’ve demonstrated over so many years,” said Colonel David Lee, Director of Strategic Communications, Marketing and Outreach for the U.S. Army Accessions Command.
“These players truly embody the characteristics of an Army Strong Soldier — demonstrating Strength through Loyalty, Duty, Respect, Selfless Service, Honor, Integrity, and Personal Courage on a daily basis. I’m proud that these young men are members of the nation’s premier high school football team.”