Cumberland Times-News

Local Sports

December 5, 2012

Writer alleges misuse of Ravens QB Challenge tickets; Preaskorn responds

Writer alleges misuse of Ravens QB Challenge tickets; Preaskorn responds

To the editor:

The Allegany High School Camper varsity football team and the Fort Hill High School Sentinel varsity football team were provided with free tickets and invited to be guests of honor at M&T Bank Stadium for the Ravens-Steelers game on Sunday, Dec. 2. During halftime, both teams' quarterbacks competed in the Quarterback Challenge alongside two receivers from each of their respective teams. The Ravens provided an equal number of tickets to each team, enough tickets for both teams to attend the game and cheer on their teammates participating in the Quarterback Challenge.

Todd Appel, the head coach for Fort Hill’s varsity football team, invited all of Fort Hill’s senior players to attend the game, and then drew names for the remaining tickets to be distributed among the juniors on the team.

Tom Preaskorn, the head coach for Allegany's varsity football team, did not invite his players to attend the game. In attendance of the game, you will find the three Allegany players who participated in the Quarterback Challenge and their parents. Coach Preaskorn is also enjoying the game from M&T Stadium, along with his family and friends. Unfortunately, Coach Preaskorn did not deem it necessary to invite any one of the other players from his team.

I would like to thank the Baltimore Ravens for their generous gift and for the opportunity to participate in such a prestigious event. I would also like to wish the best of luck to both teams, and also extend my sympathies to the Allegany players, whose head coach did not feel that they needed the rest of their team present for support.


Kayla Bittinger

Preaskorn responds


As per the Baltimore Raven’s website, under the Quarterback Challenge link ( it is clearly stated the SCHOOL receives the tickets to the game, not the varsity football players, much less the senior players.

Since the number of tickets (25) was half of the allotted amount than the last time Allegany and Fort Hill were invited (2006), I decided that the tickets would be given to the three participants and their respective families. The remainder were given to the assistant coaches, in particular those who had forfeited attending in 2006. This decision allowed for the participants of the passing competition to travel at their own expense and to remain under the supervision of their parents. The coaches traveled at their own expense. In addition, the Quarterback Challenge did NOT provide an option to purchase additional tickets, as has been erroneously reported.

At the game, both Allegany and Fort Hill representatives sat together. At halftime, both head coaches accompanied their participants to the field. The winner, Allegany, was awarded a $500 Under Armour product card for the use of the school’s ATHLETIC department (see website). This card was turned in to the administration of the high school.

Had we been allotted the number of tickets we were given in 2006, I would have managed this event accordingly. Unfortunately, only half of the amount was offered. Based upon the experience in 2006, with a much larger group, this event was a major expense for our Gridiron Club, as well as a logistical nightmare. Equally, the liability of insuring the well-being of the attendees within the environment became an abundantly challenging effort. This was enough so that those who had supervised previously did not care to do so ever again. The group was exposed to behavior that many had not been prepared for, and frankly, I did not care to take on that responsibility again.

It is unfortunate that a false perception existed for whom these tickets were intended. However, I stand by my decision, which was made based upon what I believed to be best for the invited passing competition participants and their families.

I welcome the opportunity to discuss this further, should there be any additional questions. Feel free to contact me directly.


Tom Preaskorn

Head football coach

Allegany High School


ADDENDUM: I was contacted (on Tuesday, Dec. 4) at 3 p.m. by the Ravens organization, which, according to them, was prompted by an inquiry made by an anonymous individual to that organization.

When I asked the representative about whether or not purchasing additional tickets was an option, I was told that it was not normally the case to do so, but if it were specifically asked and if the availability existed, it might be possible. My decision was based upon our previous experience in the Quarterback Challenge in 2006, in which no additional tickets were available for purchase. Had I known beforehand that more tickets could have possibly been purchased; I would have taken the opportunity. However, that information was not readily put forth at the time.


Text Only
Local Sports
  • Stotler’s hit lifts Post 13 to 5-3 win Stotler’s hit lifts Post 13 to 5-3 win

    Brandon Stotler singled home Brady Hillegas to snap a 3-3 tie in the seventh inning and all nine starters hit safely as Fort Cumberland beat Severna Park 5-3 on a chilly opening night at the Maryland American Legion Baseball State Tournament Tuesday at Memorial Field.

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • TOM BOSLEY Bosley returning to Southern sideline

    Tom Bosley is back, again, at Southern Garrett High School.
    And so are a few of his friends.

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • Casselman beats North Side, 9-1

    Connor Christner fired a two-hitter and Lance Leydig had three hits to lead Casselman Valley to a 9-1 victory in the opening game of the Rec League Championship Series Tuesday evening at Frostburg State University.

    July 30, 2014

  • Lynn Lewis scores ace at Maplehurst

    Lynn Lewis hit a hole-in-one on No. 10 at Maplehurst Country Club playing in the Knights of Columbus Golf Tournament on July 25.

    July 30, 2014

  • Sports Calendar - 07/30/2014

    July 30, 2014

  • NASCAR suspends Hamlin crew chief Grubb 6 races NASCAR suspends Hamlin crew chief Grubb 6 races

    NASCAR suspended Denny Hamlin’s crew chief and car chief on Tuesday for six races because the Joe Gibbs Racing entry failed inspection following his third-place finish at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • NCAA settles head-injury suit, will change rules NCAA settles head-injury suit, will change rules

    The NCAA agreed on Tuesday to help athletes with head injuries in a proposed settlement of a class-action lawsuit that college sports’ governing body touted as a major step forward but that critics say doesn’t go nearly far enough.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • Rory McIlroy ready to get back to work Rory McIlroy ready to get back to work

    The claret jug is not out of sight. Rory McIlroy is just trying to get it out of his mind.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • Colaw, Keller hits in 11th send Potomac Valley past Romney

    Ryan Colaw hit an RBI single in the top of the 11th inning to put Potomac Valley up 9-8 and Garrett Keller’s hit made it 10-8 as Potomac Valley won the championship game of the West Virginia Area American Legion Tournament, 10-8, in 11 innings over Romney Sunday at Petersburg High School.

    July 29, 2014

  • Maryland state tournament begins today at Memorial Field

    The Maryland American Legion Baseball State Tournament returns to Cumberland today with six teams competing for the state title at Memorial Field at the Hammersmith Hot Stove Complex.

    July 29, 2014