Dozens of Iowa’s top high school football players are in the Cedar Valley this week preparing for the annual Iowa Shrine Bowl, which will be played at the UNI-Dome on Saturday.
This is the second year the Shrine Game has been played in Cedar Falls, and game General Manager Jerry Hoffman says the familiarity has made things run very smoothly. He says UNI officials know what they need to stage the practices and games after working with them the first year.
More than 90 players will compete in Saturday’s game. Some of them have signed on to play scholarship-level football in college, but according to North coach Toby Lorenzen of Central Lyon/George-Little Rock, many others haven’t thought much about football since last fall, while others have already been in the dorms and practicing.
Lorenzen says the challenge for the coaching staff is to get players from all over the state and a variety of programs on the same page in just a couple days of practice. He says it’s a matter of keeping it simple enough that everyone understands, but making it complex enough that it still looks like a regular game. While the game is an exhibition with the proceeds going to charity, Lorenzen says that fans will still be treated to a pretty competitive contest on Saturday.
The Shrine Game kicks off Saturday afternoon at 4:00 inside the UNI-Dome. You can visit IowaShrineBowl.org for team rosters and more information.
By Jesse Gavin, KCNZ, Cedar Falls