This is bigger than Cougars vs. Tigers. This is Eagle Scout vs. Eagle Scout.
When BYU and LSU square off this Saturday in New Orleans, each side will send an Eagle Scout out to take snaps, execute handoffs and hurl passes.
Officially, the game is called the 2017 AdvoCare Texas Kickoff (moved to New Orleans from Houston because of Hurricane Harvey). Unofficially, I’m calling it the 2017 Eagle Scout Bowl.
This likely isn’t the first game in college football history featuring two Eagle Scout quarterbacks. But this is among the higher-profile instances. You’re talking about a nationally televised game between two prominent, consistently high-ranked teams. Check out the 2017 Eagle Scout Bowl at 9:30 p.m. ET Saturday, live on ESPN.
Meet the Eagle Scouts
BYU’s Tanner Mangum, a junior, became an Eagle Scout in 2008 as a member of Troop 106 of Eagle, Idaho, part of the Ore-Ida Council.
In 2015, Mangum rose to stardom as the orchestrator of two game-winning Hail Marys in back-to-back weeks.
Even more impressive: Mangum had just returned from his LDS mission trip only three months prior. He served in the Antofagasta region of northern Chile, where he and other missionaries performed earthquake and flood relief.
LSU’s Danny Etling, a senior, earned Scouting’s highest honor in 2012 as a member of Troop 17 of Terre Haute, Ind., part of the Crossroads of America Council.
Last year, Etling said Scouting was more than just an after-school activity with friends. The program, he said, made him a better football player and a better person.
Scouting “keeps you humble, keeps you working hard and going towards a goal. I still use the majority of the skills that I learned as a Boy Scout as far as being able to get guys organized, working towards a common goal based on leadership.”