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Coyote football to honor veterans, military service personnel at home opener with Military Appreciation Day

Honorary Game Captain is Tessa Dee, 2013 Miss South Dakota

VERMILLION, S.D. -- Veterans, active military personnel and their families will be honored with “Military Appreciation Day” when the University of South Dakota kicks off its 2013 football season vs. University of California-Davis on Saturday, Aug. 31.

Thanks to a special coupon that can be obtained locally and redeemed at the Coyote Ticket Office, veterans and military personnel will be admitted free to the football game while tickets for family members of veterans and military personnel will be discounted half the price of regular admission. Coupons are available at local military establishments and will also be published in Aug. 20 and Aug. 27 editions of the Equalizer. Military Appreciation Day also includes free admission to Coyote Tailgate Nation for all active military and veterans along with their families courtesy of the Equalizer and Riverfront

Broadcasting (KDAM 94.3 FM).

Military Appreciation Day activities will feature a special performance by soldiers of USD’s Military Science Department, who will repel from the rafters of the DakotaDome down to the stadium floor with the game ball in hand prior to the Coyotes taking the football field. Led by Lt. Col. Ross Nelson, a U.S. Army Aviation Officer and USD Professor of Military Science, who has been deployed three times to the Middle East and once to the Balkans and USD ROTC Cadet Mathew Scharn, a senior majoring in criminal justice, the soldiers will present the football to the game’s honorary captain, 2013 Miss South Dakota Tessa Dee, a 2013 USD graduate and native of Mitchell, S.D. Additional activities include the singing of “God Bless America” at halftime and the Sound of USD will honor service men and women with an “Armed Forces Salute” also during halftime.

“It’s a special day for students and fans of USD to show their support for military personnel and veterans who have volunteered to serve this nation and to honor those who have made the ultimate sacrifice,” said Jason Dean, USD Veterans Coordinator. “It’s also a great way for us to promote awareness of student veterans and their families at the first football game of the season for the Coyotes.”

Military Appreciation Day coupons are available for veterans, retired or active duty military members, National Guard and reserves from all branches at the following locations: the Muenster University Center Information Desk, USD ROTC Office (Burr House, corner of Cherry and University Streets), the Vermillion Eagles Club, Vermillion National Guard Armory, Yankton National Guard Armory, Sioux City Air National Guard Base and Army National Guard Armory, Sioux Falls National Guard Armory or online at The coupons must be redeemed for a game ticket at the Coyote Ticket Office, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, or the day of the game. The coupon is also available for download at

For more information about Military Appreciation Day or to learn more about redeeming Military Appreciation Day coupons for tickets to the game, please go to or call (605) 677-5959.


Founded in 1862 and the first university in the Dakotas, the University of South Dakota is the only public liberal arts university in the state, with 202 undergraduate and 78 graduate programs in the College of Arts & Sciences, School of Education, Knudson School of Law, Sanford School of Medicine, School of Health Sciences, Beacom School of Business and College of Fine Arts. With an enrollment of nearly 10,000 students and more than 400 faculty, USD has a 16:1 student/faculty ratio, and it ranks among the best in academics and affordability. USD’s 18 athletic programs compete at the NCAA Division I level.

This material is available in an alternate format upon request. Please contact University Relations at 605-677-5759. If you are a person with a disability and need a special accommodation to fully participate in any university activity or event, please contact Disability Services at 605-677-6389 as soon as possible, but no later than 48 hours before the event, so that appropriate arrangements may be made.


Hanna DeLange
USD News