October 09, 2012
At an on-campus press conference held late last month, Lt. Col. Randall V. Simmons, representing the Georgia National Guard, presented GSU President Brooks Keel and head football coach Jeff Monken with special custom Nike dark-blue digital camouflage jerseys, which will be worn by the Eagles for the Military Appreciation Day game this Saturday against Wofford.
A Georgia Southern alum and decorated officer, Simmons presented Monken with the No. 48 jersey, representing the 48th Infantry Brigade of the Georgia Army National Guard. The No. 1 jersey was presented to President Keel and sported the patch of GSU’s Eagle Battalion, which recently won its second consecutive MacArthur Award as one of the top ROTC programs in the nation.
The jerseys will have “Always Ready, Always There” on the backs and will be customized with each player’s name embroidered on the front nameplate. Players will also be able to wear specific patches to represent family members and friends who have served or are currently serving in the military. More than 100 different patches for various battalions, commands, units, ships, squadrons and submarines will be worn.
The team’s traditional dark-blue helmets will be decaled with a red stripe, representing the sacrifices of freedom, flanked with a thin, bright-yellow stroke on each side. Gray numerals on each side of the helmet also will be outlined in red and yellow.
This will be the first time the Eagles wear something other than their traditional blue or white jerseys. The jerseys will be auctioned off later this fall, with details to be announced.
“Military Appreciation Day at Georgia Southern is just one small way we can honor the men and women who serve our country and protect our freedom,” said Monken. “Wearing these special uniforms on the field will show our support for our veterans, for our active duty military, and for those who have made the supreme sacrifice for our great nation.”
Prior to the game, Paulson Stadium also will become a drop zone when the U.S. Army's elite Golden Knights parachute onto the field with the game ball.