Cushman Classic events on tap Friday
The 15th annual Cushman Classic, the crosstown football rivalry game pitting Central High School against Red River High School, will begin at 7 p.m. Friday with the kickoff and traditional bell-ringing ceremony at Cushman Field next to Red River ...
The 15th annual Cushman Classic, the crosstown football rivalry game pitting Central High School against Red River High School, will begin at 7 p.m. Friday with the kickoff and traditional bell-ringing ceremony at Cushman Field next to Red River High School.
But before the on-field action, there will be a food court and children's carnival from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. inside the Blue Line Club Arena next to Cushman Field. There will be free kids' games, T-shirts and face-painting and food for purchase.
Starting lineups will be announced at 6:50 p.m. followed by the national anthem and kick-off. The start of the game is announced by the ringing of the Burlington Northern Santa Fe bell, and this year's honorary bell ringer will be Nick Cichy, a former Red River football coach.
Red River is the home team this year, so its fans will be in the west bleachers. The Central fans will be in the east bleachers, said Grand Forks Public Schools Athletic Director Todd Olson in a news release.
Red River has won the past two Cushman Classic games, but Central leads the overall series 9 wins to 5 wins. The winning team will claim the 6-foot-by-4-foot traveling trophy. It is shaped like North Dakota with an intersecting knight's sword and a cavalry sword (representing the Central Knights and Red River Roughriders), also helmets from each team and a silhouette of a bell, and is inscribed with the score of each game.
After the game, outstanding offensive and defensive players for each team are announced.
The Cushman Classic and Cushman Field were named for Clifton E. Cushman, who helped Central High School win the 1955 and 1956 state track crowns. In 1960, he won a silver medal in the 400-meter hurdles at the Rome Olympics.
In 1964, a fall that disqualified him at Olympic trials inspired him to write a letter, "To the Youth of Grand Forks," telling them not to feel sorry for him and challenging them to try harder in all that they did.
A pilot in the Vietnam war, Cushman was shot down in 1966 and declared dead in 1975.