BYU fans plan mass recitation for Abe

Nov 16 2013 - 1:06am

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Who wants to mix a little learning with the college sports scene?

To mark the 150th anniversary of President Abraham Lincoln's Gettysburg Address, thousands of sports fans will recite the speech in unison this weekend on the BYU campus.

A group gave the speech at halftime of Friday's BYU-Mount St. Mary's game at the Marriott Center, and will follow it up during halftime of today's BYU-Idaho State football game at Edwards Stadium.

Stan Ellsworth, host of BYUtv's popular history show "American Ride", will lead the recitations as a part of GettyReady, a statewide non-profit initiative launched in September 2013 to encourage Utahns of all ages to celebrate American democracy and honor the relevance of the iconic speech.

Nov. 19 is the actual anniversary. Events across the state and country, including institutions like PBS, The Library of Congress and The National Park Service, are a response to a challenge by renowned documentary producer Ken Burns, whose Learn the Address project calls for everyone in the U.S. to learn and recite the Gettysburg address and submit video recordings to his web site.

Pair of aces

If this is the last golf story we relate all season, it's a good one.

A trio of regulars played a round on Monday at The Barn Golf Course (that's 11-11 if you're looking for good vibes.)

Mike Summers stepped up to the tee on hole No. 6, the tricky little 150-yard par-3 at the Pleasant View Golf Course. He lofted his 7-iron toward the pin, and watched it roll in for an ace.

After getting congratulations from playing partners Jim Card and Scott Reese, Summers stepped back and watch Card blast a 9-iron toward the green.

You guessed it, back-to-back hole-in-ones for the group.

Now, instead of putting the sticks away, I'm tempted to get a few more swings in.

Erudite gridder

It seems like just about every football TV announcing crew now includes a former player who can express himself in impressive fashion.

To my recollection, Todd Christensen was one of the first to pull it off.

Utah resident Christensen, who passed away earlier this week at age 57, excelled at every stop on his football career.

He enjoyed a stellar career at BYU during the early rise of the program under LaVell Edwards, then found his niche as a tight end with the Oakland Raiders. He played 10 years, gaining Super Bowl and Pro Bowl experiences along the way.

Then, he turned his focus to the TV booth, providing color commentary on numerous networks for the past 20 years.

He will be inexorably missed.

Tidbits

Weber State will host the 3-A, 2-A and 1-A football championships today on the turf at Stewart Stadium. ...

Real Salt Lake FW Benji Lopez was named to the U.S. U-20 Men's National Team roster for an international training camp in Verona, Italy, going on now through Nov. 10-20. ...

Three Jazz players -- Derrick Favors, Gordon Hayward and Enes Kanter are featured on the 2014 NBA All-Star ballot. ...

The Front Climbing Club in Ogden will host this year's American Bouldering Series Regional Championship for the Southern Mountain Region, set for Dec. 7 and 8. The competition will bring 250 youth competitors to town. ...

Southern Utah track and field alumna Kristi Koplin is continuing her athletic career as a member of the 2013-14 U.S. Women's Bobsled National Team. Competing as a brakeman, Koplin will race with the national team in hopes of being chosen for the U.S. Olympic team to compete at the 2014 Games in Sochi, Russia. She was a thrower at SUU, and earned her nursing degree while also participating in the ROTC program. ...

Former Davis High runner Jared Ward got good news on Thursday, as the BYU runner's appeal to have his fourth season of cross country eligibility reinstated was approved. ...

The Utah Grizzlies are continuing their work with the Angel's Hands Foundation. The team will host Angel's Hands Night tonight at the Maverik Center. The team will wear jerseys to be auctioned to raise funds for the AHF, which raises money to help Utah families deal with the everyday struggles facing families with rare diseases.

Contact sports editor Chris J. Miller at 801-625-4261, cmiller@standard.net. Follow him on Twitter at @cjmsports. Friend him on Facebook at Standard-Examiner Sports.

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