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Mid-First Bank Backyard Bowl returns to Skelly Stadium

September 12, 2009

This annual grudge match between Oklahoma powerhouses returns to Skelly after last year’s game at Union’s home field. A record crowd is expected to see this game which always delivers nail-biting action.

Last Year the first half belonged to Union as they jumped out to an early 14-0 lead before Jenks had time to get off the bus and catch their breath. By halftime, the score read 17-3 and things looked less than promising for the Trojan football team. The final quarter of the game came with no small amount of action and excitement, as it saw an improbable, come from behind effort by the Jenks Trojans which knotted the game up at 17-17 just as time ran out on regulation play. Jenks had made the valiant effort and earned themselves another life in overtime. But the climb to victory proved to be a yard too much. Union would score on their first sudden death possession and kick the extra point to take a 24-17 lead. On their first possession of the OT period, Jenks drove the ball to the two-yard line with one down remaining. They would make one last attempt on 4th and goal, and come up just short.

Gates open at 5:30pm at newly renovated University of Tulsa’s Skelly Field at Chapman Stadium. Over 20,000 fans are expected to come out and pack the stands to witness this intense battle. For those unable to attend, the game will be covered here.

The Jenks-Union “Midfirst Bank Backyard Bowl” is one of 30 must-see match ups selected for the Air Force-sponsored Rivalry Series. This rivalry of all rivalries resides in Tulsa, Oklahoma, where kids grow up playing against each other – hence the name Backyard Bowl. While Jenks holds the series’ record, 29-13, Union will focus its attention on winning their third straight rivalry game. Records aside, both teams will square off on Friday looking to set the tone for the season by bringing home the victory.

As part of the Series, the winning team earns bragging rights and the coveted Great American Rivalry Champion trophy, presented on field by a member of the United States Air Force. The game’s Most Valuable Player is also recognized, and the Series awards the top student-athlete from each school a $500 college scholarship.

Jenk’s recipient is senior tight end Tyler Ott. Tyler has a 3.98 grade-point average and is a three-year letterman on the varsity football team. Union’s recipient is Bob Lind. Bob carries a 3.89 GPA and is a senior linebacker for the Redskins.

You don’t have to be on the field to enjoy the excitement of the Series. Fans are encouraged to stop by the Air Force booth to compete in the Great American Rivalry Series “Air Force Challenge.” Six semifinalists will win an Air Force prize package and be entered for a chance to win the grand prize, a Flip Video Ultra camcorder. The grand prize winner will be announced during the game.

“The Air Force is proud to be part of the Great American Rivalry Series again,” said Master Sgt. Jeffrey B. Morris, program manager, Events Marketing for Headquarters Air Force Recruiting Service. “This allows us to showcase how teamwork, dedication, and commitment to excellence goes beyond the football field. It helps us connect with fans and emphasizes these values are common in both football and the Air Force. We are excited and pleased to be associated with this series, the schools and the student athletes.”

The Great American Rivalry Series emerged from a desire to celebrate the cultural phenomenon of Friday night high school football. The Series shines the spotlight on classic gridiron clashes where expectations are sky high and die-hard fans abound. For many seniors, this may be the last big game of their high school career and the climax of their “Glory Days.” The Rivalry Series captures this experience, which players will recall at reunions years down the road.


Friday, Sept. 11th at 7:00 p.m. CT
Blue Springs vs. Rockhurst
Blue Springs, MO

Friday, Sept. 11th at 7:30 p.m. CT
Holy Cross vs. Jesuit
New Orleans, LA

Friday, Sept. 11th at 7:30 p.m. CT
Jenks vs. Union
Tulsa, OK

Saturday, Sept. 12th at 7:00 p.m. CT
Ben Davis vs. Warren Central
Indianapolis, IN

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What is the Great American Rivalry Series?

Each fall for over a century, high school football has been the centerpiece for families and communities on Friday night. In 2004, iHigh, Inc. created the Great American Rivalry Series to celebrate this uniquely American sport and the cultural phenomenon of “Friday Night in America.” The Series shines the spotlight on top high school football rivalries across the nation, where long-standing traditions are valued, expectations are sky high, and followers are committed.