A dozen or so Buckeye football players got together to play video games for a good cause near campus on Sunday.
For the third time in less than two years, Ohio State took part in an event along with Uplifting Athletes, a group dedicated to raising rare diseases to become national priorities through outreach, research, education and advocacy.
The Buckeyes chose to throw their support toward drawing attention to the genetic disorder Charcot-Marie-Tooth.
“This event is really to bring awareness for rare diseases,” said Ohio State defensive back Donnie Evege, a junior who served as chairman for the event. “Today is a global day for rare disease, and what makes it even more special is Terrelle Pryor’s father Craig has CMT, so it’s going to be near and dear to our football family and it’s going to be a great event.”
Dozens of Ohio State trekked to the Damon’s Bar and Grill on Olentangy River Road near the Columbus campus for an afternoon of gaming and fun.
Fans purchased tickets and were able to watch the players play each other in the NCAA Football 2010 video game, and players signed a plethora of autographs and posed for many pictures before the day was out.
“As Ohio State football players, we’re blessed with so much, so many fans and so many people caring about us, so whenever we get the chance to give back a little bit, I think we should jump on in,” senior offensive lineman Bryant Browning said. “And for us, it’s a little fun for us to come out and play as well, so it’s a good time.”
Sophomore running back Jordan Hall claimed the championship of the event by knocking off classmate Duron Carter, the defending champions who won the last time the Buckeyes had a similar gathering for the same cause in August.
To get to the championship round, Hall defeated redshirt freshman quarterback Kenny Guitar in the opening round and junior quarterback and former high school teammate Terrelle Pryor in the second round.
Carter began the defense of his title by beating redshirt freshman defensive back Corey Brown then senior safety Aaron Gant.
Also taking part in the tournament were seniors cornerback Chimdi Chekwa and wide receiver Taurian Washington.
Junior receiver DeVier Poesy served as emcee for the event.
While Ohio State took part in an Uplifting Athletes activity for the third time, this was the first multi-site event.
After Hall took home the local championship, he pitted his skills against the best West Virginia had to offer and came up short.
Georgia won the overall competition that also included representatives from Virginia, Texas and Penn State.