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Star-Bulletin Sports

Tuesday, May 9, 2000

H U L A _ B O W L

Hula Bowl to work
with NFL

By Paul Arnett


In an effort to offset the drain of talent heading to the Senior Bowl, the Hula Bowl will be more involved with the National Football League in future college all-star games on Maui.

"We recognize that we had to do something to show our college all-star game isn't a vacation for the players," Hula Bowl director Lenny Klompus said yesterday.

"We're going to have more of an NFL presence -- and by that I mean coaches and players will be involved in our practices -- to show we're as serious as the Senior Bowl.

"Having the game in Hawaii has hurt us some because the perception is the game is only for fun. And that's not true."

Klompus said two-thirds of the players in this year's game were either drafted or signed free-agent contracts.

He also confirmed that he will meet with NFL officials over the summer to see how they will be involved in the practices.

"Right now, we are talking with the NCAA over what we can and can't do," Klompus said. "We'll know more in August how the NFL will be involved. We just can't sit still with our game. We have to keep evolving and finding ways to make it better."

Klompus announced yesterday that two-time Heisman Trophy winner Archie Griffin will be here in January to help promote the game.

The two head coaches this year are Frank Beamer of Virginia Tech and Bobby Bowden of Florida State.

"We're working on some other things to help keep the Hula Bowl a viable game," Klompus said. "But we feel getting the NFL more involved will only help us in the future."

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