Freedom Bowl notes: Welcome Seton Catholic

I do not recall any Seton Catholic football players competing in last year’s Freedom Bowl Classic so forgive me if I missed anyone. With that said, I believe this will be the first Freedom Bowl with Seton Catholic athletes.

Welcome Justin James and Christopher O’Connor to the big summer football showcase.

O’Connor plans on attending the University of Portland and hopes to major in mechanical engineering. Unless UP starts a football program soon, the Freedom Bowl will be his last organized football game.

James will keep playing the game. He recently announced he will be playing at Carroll College in Helena, Mont. (By the way, John O’Rourke, the longtime Columbia River coach, played at Carroll College.)

James, a wide receiver, led Seton Catholic with 35 receptions for 723 yards and eight touchdowns in the fall.

O’Connor, listed as a linebacker, and James will not be on the same team this summer, though. O’Connor was drafted to the “National” team, while James was selected for the “American” squad. We could see a Seton vs. Seton battle.

According to the countdown on the Freedom Bowl’s website, there are less than 52 days until the summer football showcase.
From time to time, I will have a few notes on the upcoming event (like the above item on Seton’s athletes), as well as a look back on its history.

I was at the first Freedom Bowl Classic. I’ve missed one or two through the years, but I’ve been to most of them.

Here is why I love the game: It’s a real competition.

Hey, that’s saying something. A lot of these all-star games, exhibition games, are just for show. The football game is an exhibition, of course, but trust me, both teams want to win. There is an offense trying to score and a defense trying to stop the offense.

The basketball all-star game for Southwest Washington is a fan favorite. It is entertaining. But face it, the game usually turns into players just trying to one-up the other, with very little defense. That is not a complaint. After a basketball season of team, defense, team, defense, it is fun to see these guys let their inner Kobe loose for a game, to see the girls let their inner Diana Taurasi loose for a game.

Last year’s Southwest Washington all-star baseball game deteriorated quickly from a high school game to rec league. Again, not necessarily a bad thing. However, there were guys batting two times in the same inning while others did not get to hit. Pretty much, any guy with a bat in his hand could walk up to the plate and just like that, he was the batter. Lineup? What lineup?

All fun, but the exhibition football game remains the closest thing to the real thing.

Plus, as everyone knows, football is the greatest game ever. Not opinion. Fact. 🙂

2014 Freedom Bowl Classic
July 12
McKenzie Stadium
Kickoff: 7:30 p.m.
Other: Clark County Youth Football games will be played at 2 and 4 p.m.
Cost: $10

For more information, go to the Freedom Bowl’s website:

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