CAMP NOTEBOOK: New special features to highlight 2013 Gathering of Eagles


By Mike Lehman, TTU Sports Information

COOKEVILLE, Tenn. – Some special features, including a free women's clinic hosted by head coach Watson Brown and a Kids Zone, have been added to the annual Gathering of Eagles coming up on Saturday, Aug. 17, in Tucker Stadium. The women's clinic is free.

Tennessee Tech football fans will once again be given the opportunity to take in some preseason action in 2013 at the annual Gathering of Eagles picnic and scrimmage.

Featuring free food and the chance to see a preview of some Golden Eagle football, the Gathering has become a popular preseason tradition for Golden Eagle fans. This year, fans will have even more to look forward to as Tech will introduce three new features.

For the first time, Tennessee Tech football coach Watson Brown will host a Women's Clinic. Women of all ages are encouraged to come out and learn some insight on the game of football in a one-hour session beginning at 10:30 a.m. Registration is open and free to the first 100 women to sign up and each registered attendee will receive a one-of-a-kind commemoritive t-shirt.

Call the Athletics Ticket office at (931) 372-3940 to register for the free women's clinic.

Also new to the Gathering of Eagles this year is a Tennessee Tech athletics surplus sale. Open to the public, the Golden Eagle athletics department will be selling game-worn jerseys and other memorabilia in the big white tent at the KISS 98.5 FM Tailgate Park from 10 a.m. to noon.

Parents interested in taking part in the day's festivities have an added bonus as the third new feature to the Gathering of Eagles is a Kids Zone, complete with blow-up slides, moon walks, and other fun activities. The Kids Zone will be open from 10 a.m. to noon, as well.

Beginning at noon, fans can enjoy the traditional part of the Gathering of Eagles as hot dogs, chips, cookies, and Pepsi products will be served for free. Also available to Tech fans will be football posters and schedule cards for the upcoming season.

The Golden Eagle football team will kick off its final fall scrimmage at 1 p.m. as the team prepares for its season opener against Cumberland on Thursday, Aug. 29. Following the scrimmage, all the members of the Tech football team will join thefans on the sidelines to sign posters, visit and talk football.

"From a fans perspective, this event has proven to be a lot of fun," Brown said. "It gives the fans a chance to come out and have some food, watch some football, and get to know the players a little.

"Adding the women's clinic is something we think can become a popular event," Brown added. "We expect women who have a wide variety of knowledge of the game of football, and we hope to make it fun as well as informative."

Whie the day is lots of fun for the fans, the scrimmage is important to the coaching staff and players.

"From the coach's perspective, the final scrimmage will give our team a good opportunity to evaluate where we stand at that point during camp, and where we need to get to before our first game," Brown said. "It will also give the coaching staff a chance to look at some film and fill in some open spots on the depth chart."

Entering their seventh season with Brown at the helm, the Golden Eagles will look to land back on top of the Ohio Valley Conference.

"The Gathering of Eagles is a great event for getting our fans excited about the approaching football season," said TTU Director of Athletics Mark Wilson. "It has been growing every year and this year is no different with all of the added activities. Everybody enjoys it, from the student-athletes and the fans, to the coaching staff, and everybody who helps put on the event."

The Golden Eagles will host six home football games during the 2013 season, opening against Cumberland on Thursday, Aug. 29. Following two road contests, Tech will open its OVC schedule on Saturday, Sept. 21 with a night game against Tennessee State, which will be aired on ESPN3. The team will wrap up its non-conference schedule the following week as it hosts Indiana State on Saturday, Sept. 28. The final three home contests for the Golden Eagles are OVC opponents as Tech plays host to UT Martin (Oct. 10), Jacksonville State (Oct. 26), and Austin Peay (Nov. 23).

For season ticket information, contact the Tennessee Tech Athletics Ticket Office in Eblen Center or call 931-372-3940. Tickets are also on sale online at TTUsports.com.