Belton, Texas – On Saturday, November 11, the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor celebrated its annual Military Appreciation Day. Three hundred and sixty-nine veterans, active-duty soldiers, and their family members attended the final home game of the CRU football program's regular season, where they enjoyed free admission, hotdogs, and drinks.
Members of every armed service were honored before and during the game. First, Chaplain Lieutenant Colonel Christopher G. Archer, 13th Expeditionary Sustainment Command Chaplain, gave the invocation. Then, country music artist and native Central Texan Holly Tucker performed a moving rendition of The Star-Spangled Banner. Finally, Colonel Steven Carozza, commander of the 1st Cavalry Division Sustainment Brigade, conducted the coin toss.
During halftime, the Blackshirt Cru Spirit Band performed a medley of patriotic music followed by the official hymn of each brand of the armed services. During each hymn, the active-duty and veteran members of the respective military branch stood and were celebrated by the Crusader Stadium crowd. Two active-duty soldiers and a veteran, all from Fort Hood, competed in a field goal contest and were awarded prize packages from gameday sponsor CEFCO.
The CRU emerged from the game victorious, defeating the Tigers of East Texas Baptist University by of score of 31 to 21. With this win the team's record moves to a perfect 10-0, and the CRU clinched the outright American Southwest Conference (ASC) title. This is the thirteenth straight conference title for the CRU football program. It marks the fifteenth time the team has won the conference in the program's 20-year history. The team will open the first round of the NCAA Division III playoffs on Saturday, November 18, in Crusader Stadium.