Ducks to Honor Troops in Spring

The University of Oregon Ducks will start the 2011 football season off again this year with the annual spring workout sessions starting March 29th and culminate the 15-practice sessions with the Spring Game scheduled for April 30th starting at 1 p.m. in Autzen Stadium. According to Head Coach Chip Kelly, the Ducks' final scrimmage will honor America's armed forces.

The Spring Game, presented by Bi-Mart is Kelly's third as head coach and will be broadcast nationally again by ESPN2.

According to a media release from the Oregon Athletic Department there will be a two-hour Fan Fest prior to the intrasquad scrimmage, with the Moshofsky Center opening at 11 a.m. The event inside the Mo Center will include live music, interactive gaming as well as a representation from the branches of the armed forces plus representatives of the Oregon National Guard and U.S Coast Guard.

"This not only presents a tremendous opportunity for our fans to pay their respects for the sacrifices men and women around the country make every day, but proved to be an eye-opening experience for our players and coaches," Kelly said in the release. "There were relationships formed from last year's experience that extended beyond just one afternoon."

The media release also indicated that last year's attendance was 25,211 spectators.

Admission for the Spring Game again will be three non-perishable food items, which will be donated to Food for Lane County. The local food bank has benefited from the donation of more than 20,000 pounds of food from the final spring scrimmage each of the last two years.

Parking in the east Autzen Stadium lots, which will open at 10:30 a.m., will be $5 per automobile, with the Ducks' Sports Shuttles also operating from select locations.

Much of the pregame, halftime and postgame festivities will include participation from the armed services, including a joint service color guard and ceremonies to honor the men and women from the state and their families for the sacrifices of their time overseas.

The Ducks will open the 2011 college football regular season against LSU in the Cowboys Classic on Saturday, Sept. 3, at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas. The Cowboys Classic will be televised on either ABC, ESPN or ESPN2.

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