McNeese Holds ‘Victory Day’ for Children with Special Needs

Published: Aug. 9, 2022 at 7:13 PM CDT
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Lake Charles, LA (KPLC) - McNeese football has been hard at work over the past week as they prepare for the 2022 season, but on Tuesday, the Cowboys took a break to do something more important than football. McNeese held their first annual Victory Day, a day to provide an opportunity for cognitively, and physically impaired children to play football, cheer, and participate in game day activities at Cowboy Stadium.

This was something head coach Gary Goff introduced to McNeese after his former quarterback coach Phillip Ely introduced it to him when he joined the coaching staff at Tiffin under coach Goff. Due to COVID-19, coach Goff was unable to hold the day to give back while at Valdosta State, but he was excited to give the children the opportunity to go through gameday activities, score a touchdown, and have a fun day with the players, during his first offseason with McNeese.

“It’s a special day to be able to give back to the community, to help somebody, to not take our game for granted, and we’re able to do these things and give these children a chance to see what it’s like to go through camp, to score a touchdown, to simulate a game, and have the band play, and the cheerleaders cheer after they score a touchdown” said coach Goff.

“It was awesome, just being out here, having all the guys in the huddle, and then getting to welcome them into the huddle... and just to see the joy on the kids faces when they’re running down the field, and going into the end zone, it’s an awesome opportunity for all of us, and it’s probably more fun for us than it is for them, so it was an awesome day” said quarterback Walker Wood.

Following the festivities, each participant received a medal from the day, and they were also surprised with two tickets to see their victory day teammates, the McNeese Cowboys, suit up in 2022.

Kenneth Loup, the father of one of the participants said “I’m a McNeese graduate, and it’s great to see my alma mater do something like this, having a special needs kid, and seeing him interact with the football players, it was great.”

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