Former Arkansas and ASU Players Battle For Good Cause

by Casey Hawkins  on Friday, Jun. 8, 2012 3:37 pm  

This story is from the archives of ArkansasSports360.com.

The last time the Arkansas and Arkansas State men competed on a basketball court was in the 1987 National Invitation Tournament.

The Hogs were down by 21 points with 12 minutes left then came back to defeat ASU in overtime 67-64.

Now, a few former Hogs and Indians will get the chance to compete once more, this time for something greater.

Alumni players from Arkansas State and a handful of former Razorbacks are expected play in an exhibition Saturday at 6:30 p.m. in the Jonesboro High School gym. They will play two 15-minute halves in a game designed to raise awareness and funds for the Northeast Arkansas Children's Advocacy Center (NEACAC).

The NEACAC is one of nine Centers in Arkansas and 900 across the country. Its mission is to respond to children with claims of sexual abuse. It houses a child-friendly environment for video taping of forensic interviews with trained law enforcement professionals.

"We host interviews with children who are victims of sexual abuse,” said Susie Cover, executive director of the NEACAC. “We make sure the child tells the story, but only has to tell it one time. We make videos of the interviews and then make copies for whoever needs it.”

The ultimate goal of the Center is to minimize the number of times a child is interviewed and reduce the child victim’s chances of being re-traumatized by having to tell their story of abuse to another stranger.

Pat Bradley, co-host of “The Zone” on 103.7 The Buzz, will be among the former Razorbacks, a group that includes an ex-football player or two. Bradley is involved with a children’s advocacy center in central Arkansas and said the purpose behind the game and the chance to interact with other former college players got him involved.

“It should be fun,” Bradley said. “I feel bad on the competition side because not all of us are where we might have been 10 years ago, but it will be good to see all those guys. And it’s great to know we’ll bring a lot of people in the community together and help raise awareness for the children’s advocacy center. It’s an incredible need.” 

C.J. Pepper, a former ASU player (before the mascot changed to Red Wolves) and Harlem Globetrotter, said he’s playing in the game because investment in children is something lacking in today’s society.

“I wanted to find a way to raise money for the Center,” he said. “I want to see a good game, but I want people to be more aware of the Center and how they make it safer for children.”

It may be awhile before Arkansas and Arkansas State meet again in an officially sanctioned collegiate game, so this will have to do for now.

 

 

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