posted on Dec, 6 2004 @ 08:51 PM
MONTGOMERY, Ala. -- The Blue-Gray All-Star Classic has been called off for the second time in three years because officials couldn't find a corporate
sponsor for the Christmas Day showcase for aspiring NFL players.
The Blue-Gray game was a Christmas tradition since 1978, featuring college seniors from teams that didn't qualify for bowl games.
Organizers had attempted to move the game from Christmas Day to Jan. 8 after the bowl games were completed, Blue-Gray Association President Mahlon
Paulk said Monday.
"We thought this was really going to be an answer, because we were going to be able to get more name athletes that the public would have
identification with," Paulk said. "I think it would have worked. I think it would have really brought a lot more people into the stands having it a
day other than Christmas Day."
Paulk said ESPN2 had agreed to air the game on Jan. 8, but had to find alternative programming when Blue-Gray officials were still unable to find a
sponsor to play the game.
Last season, the game was held at Troy University, a 45-minute drive from its longtime home at Cramton Bowl in Montgomery.
The Montgomery Lions Club has run the game for 56 years but has struggled to find corporate backing in recent years as the number of bowl games grew
and other Christmas Day sporting events expanded.
Paulk wasn't ruling out a return for the game.
"For the 2004 season, it's out," he said. "We're hoping that we'll have something for 2005, either Christmas week or the first or second week in
January 2006. Right now we don't have anything."
[Edited on 12/6/2004 by Gibbs Baby!!!]