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12/7/00 Mark Hankel  picked to play in Aztec Bowl

Concordia's Mark Hankel (Sr., DE, Mapleton, ND), a two time All-MIAC honoree and 2000 MIAC Outstanding Lineman award winner, has been picked as one of 40 Division III players making up the American squad for the December 16 Aztec Bowl football game in Merida, Mexico.

The Aztec Bowl, sponsored by the American Football Coaches Assosication (www.afca.com), matches a group of USA Division III All-Stars against a Mexican All-Star Team.  Kickoff is set for 6:30 CST Dec. 16 at Alvarado Stadium in Merida.

The US team will be coached for the fourth consecutive year by former Central of Iowa head coach Ron Schipper.

Hankel will be the third Cobber to take part in the Aztec Bowl. Jake Estenson played last year and Tory Langemo played in the 1997 game, the first year that this game was sponsored by the AFCA.

2000 Aztec Bowl Game Information

Date: Saturday, December 16, 2000
Kickoff: 7 p.m. CST
Site: Alvarado Stadium, Merida, Mexico (cap: 8,000)
Television: None in the U.S.
Internet: Results will be available on the AFCA’s website at www.afca.com.

The Series: Fourth USA National Team-Mexico National Team meeting. U.S. leads 3-0. Prior to 1997, Mexico had a record of 11-14-1 in 26 Aztec Bowls dating back to 1947. Opponents in those games were a mixture of junior colleges, NCAA and NAIA schools, military and international teams.

Last Year: The USA National Team defeated Mexico 44-13 in front of 12,000 fans at Massieu Stadium in Mexico City, Mexico. Buena Vista runningback Ben Smith rushed for two touchdowns and 137 yards to lead the U.S. squad and was named the Player of the Game.

Event Background: The Aztec Bowl is the traditional season-ending game for Mexico’s college football season. The game has been played 29 times since 1947 with the last two contests in 1997 and 1998 featuring the United States-Mexico match-up. Mexico faced a mixture of NCAA and NAIA colleges, junior colleges, armed forces teams and international teams in the 26 Aztec Bowls prior to 1997.

AFCA Involvement: Along with giving outstanding Division III players an opportunity to play in an all-star game setting, the Aztec Bowl is part of the AFCA’s involvement with Football Federation USA. FFUSA was organized in 1998 for the purpose of uniting the amateur football athletes around  the world through education, special events and travel.

Aztec Bowl Alumni: Two former USA Team members, London Fletcher and Clint Kriewaldt, are currently playing in the National Football League. Fletcher, who played collegiately at John Carroll and was a member of the 1997 U.S. team, is a starting linebacker with the Super Bowl champion St. Louis Rams.  Kriewaldt was the Detroit Lions’ 1999 fifth-round draft pick out of Wisconsin-Stevens Point and played in the 1998 Aztec Bowl.

For more on the game go to : www.afca.com

This page is maintained by the Concordia Sports Information Office pyle@cord.edu |