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Michael Quartey – National Bowl Game

October 22, 2011

Michael Quartey – National Bowl Game:

First, can you tell readers about the National Bowl. When it takes place and who’s invited?

The National Bowl is an invite only All Star Game for standout College Seniors played annually in Allentown, PA. The aim is to showcase players with less exposure and/or from  small schools that are looking for exposure. The game is followed by the D2-D3 Pro Day & National Scouting Combine in January and February. College football standouts from all divisions are invited to attend but the rosters tend to focus on Division 2 and Division 3 players.

How difficult was it to organize the game – to get schools to commit to players attending and scouts to come?

It is extremely tolling on the individuals involved, I have to thank my wife Jacole and partner Jonathan Tilly for the unwavering support over the years.The planning is done 9 months in advance and  most of the executing is done a couple of months before the game and time is of the essence because players seasons are ending and coaches go on the road  and some players are thinking they will never strap on the pads ever again until they get a call from their coach. W just try and honor the players and give them at least one more time!

 How do you select the players and coaches – what’s the process?

Coaches and scouts are selected through our extensive network we have built thru East Preps as we have placed over 40+ players on different teams in every league and all over the world so we try and leverage our relationships  and coaches respect what we are doing so they say that kid from Pace they sent us was better than our 5th rounder…lets see what East Preps has going on.

 What is the player experience during this week – what processes do they go through before and after the game?

The National Bowl weekend is 2 days Saturday and Sunday with 3 practices and Gametime. We have some great charities we are playing for, Austim Society Lehigh Chapter and both PA foundations for autistic kids. The players get to give back and are also cheered on by some of the nations best cheerleaders. Our game is a high-end game with a great product with a sweat and equity budget.

Most players pay their own way or find a family member or family friend to sponsor them so we limit the weekend to 2 days and keep our sign up costs lower than even most HS Bowls so these seniors get the opportunity to PLAY and socialize with other All Americans and All Conference Players. 2 teamates can split one of our discounted bowl rate hotels and only pay $35-$70 for housing for the weekend. Last year we had longer days and only used half the practices. We want these players to come have fun so we don’t do a formal dinner but rather a comfortable mixer where coaches, players, staff, and families can chat and have Fun which is the focus of the weekend. These are the best of the best, they know the basics they just need to let loose.

How is the game funded, and who usually sends scouts to view the pregame practices and game itself?

The first game we funded through player sign up and out of pocket. We still do not have a major sponsor and are always looking but our business plan is solid and we have made it so we can still pull it off without one. We believe we have to prove our worth and the sponsors and TV contracts will come. We have some great Hotels, Restaurants, and News broadcast people that have given so much to us. Its a busy time of year so many scouts can only make the game itself. Fortunately for us and the players our coaches come from the AFL, IFL, and UIFL and bring staff and scouts. They get other teams involves because no team wants to miss an opportunity on a player they didn’t have on their board.

We have been lucky, right before this interview a major CFL team the Montreal Alouettes just confirmed its attendance so that puts us in a separate class that I have our clients that have been in NFL camps begging to play!

 Are there plans for expanding this and having an actual combine-like experience as well for teams and players?

 It’s our philosophy to not test these Players in early or mid  December. For small school players publishing times to pro teams after they have been banged up and played their hearts out and haven’t had 8 weeks or more to train is unfair and downright detrimental to their futures. That is why the NFL and Pro Days don’t test until late February and all of March. We created run the D2-D3 Pro Day & National Scouting Combine that has been attended by several pro teams that players compete at East Preps Regional Combines across the country (all divisions) and the top 100 players are picked to attend the National D2-D3 Combine in New Jersey.

We are in our 3rd year and last year we had a young man, Michael Galatas from D3 Millsaps College run a legit 4.25 40 yard dash at our Houston TX Regional Combine. (Top 5 fastest times ever run) He was 3 time Special Teams Conference player of the year and just a fluid runner. reported that he turned heads at our Pro Day and signed a free agent contract with the New Orleans Saints. Now if we test in Dec4 or Dec 15….and he runs a 4.4 does he get into camp or stand out? To be honest, if he doesn’t come to the combine and get tested does he get noticed from his film alone? From coming up against the NFL glass ceiling we used years of experience to precisely calculate what is needed to try and make it to the next level and the National Bowl is the first step but not the last.

What was last year’s game like – who shined and how did it end up?

Last years game was thriller and came down to a field goal with 30 seconds let kicked by Chaz Jones. Beau Reed from Fairleigh Dickinson U won the MVP with 1 touchdown and 2 sacks. He got a private workout with the UFL. Leonard Stevenson of Wesley College was runner up MVP with several catches and a TD and he signed a free agent contract to the Reading Express of the IFL who will also be in attendance at this years game.

 Who are some of the exciting players you expect to attend this year?

All of them!! LMAO….I can’t answer that just yet and rosters will be announced On Thanksgiving of this year. I will tell you this their will be some players.. and on any given Sunday sometimes your surprised by who it is but thats why we play the games!

When you see these Division II and III players, are there any thoughts in your mind as to whether these college athletes should get paid or at least be offered stipends, as Beano Cook recently suggested (

I played football at Franklin & Marshall College “00 and was a captain, 3 time all conference player and All American and I loved every minute of it and still miss it so that may be what drives me. The essence of small schools is that you play your hearts out regardless of external motivations, Scouts, Money, or  even Fame and the schools tend to produce well rounded student-athletes. No one plays football forever and getting paid for a lifetime as  a result of a good college major is better than getting paid a lot of money in a short period of time because those guys learn that your earning over a lifetime.

After I graduated in those days, there was almost NEVER any D3 player making an NFL camp and so I got my law degree from Rutgers. Now our kids have options and they can go to Med school or play in the AFL.. not a bad future. Our #1 overall performer Brandon Wright of Arkansas Tech at last years combine  out of 140 players now works in the Corporate world in New York City. Its funny in a year he may come back and say Mike I want to try and play overseas.

When your talking about big schools, the dynamic is much different and there is a lot of money exchanging hands with TV contracts and conference guaranteed money but its an “amateur sport”. However,  many Great players actually have a measurable and projected future business deal waiting for them in the Pros, but the players and agents are demonized for cutting similar types of business deals for the next step in the players future. Now you see musical conference chairs  with these teams leaving conferences just to see the “free agent” conference cash and I think the sport suffers.  Smaller schools embody the tradition of college football but lets see what happens now as a lot of these players are going pro.

 Any last thoughts for readers?

We would just welcome the readers, fans, and supporters of these players to check out our website (,  ( and ( and see how these young men are impacted and how they pass it on to the next generation. Sport is about dreaming one day you can be Cam Newtown or James Harrison so we will see one of them may be playing on December 4th.

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