Arkansas AAU All-Star Football Teams Sweep Texas

For an Arkansan beating Texas in anything is gratifying. The Arkansas AAU Football League All-Stars experienced the feeling three times last Friday on a large stage.
The 8U, 10U and 12U teams, comprised of kids from the Little Rock metro area, s1540293_10202158859786669_159225280_owept three games from the South Texas AAU Youth Football League All-Stars at AT&T Stadium — the home of the Dallas Cowboys.
“It was pretty nice to go down to Texas and beat Texas teams three times,” says Arkansas AAU Football Director Reggie Swinton. “We are in our first year to have a league and to go down and beat Texas, who is known as a football power, is big for our state. Not just Little Rock but the entire state.”
The series of games know as “The Border Battle” was the product of a collaboration between Swinton and South Texas AAU Football Director Rod Tanner. Cowboys Stadium became an option, partly because Swinton is a former Cowboys receiver. The two teams shared the cost and used fundraisers to earn the money needed to pay for rent.
“Last September or October, I was just trying to put a team and a league together,” says Swinton, who is also run the Arkansas Lions AAU squad. “I didn’t envision putting an all-star team together or playing at [AT&T Stadium].”
All of the players and families that attended the game received a tour of the stadium.
“When we got there they were running out on the field and playing around like they were in the backyard,” Swinton says. “Watching them run around “Jerry’s World” was gratifying as a coach and dad that I had a hand in them being able to experience that.”
The two coaches decided before the series began that the organization that won two of three of the games would take home a traveling trophy.
The Arkansas squads claimed the trophy and will bring it back to defend it against the San Antonio area league next year.
Swinton is committed to developing youth football players in Little Rock and possibly the rest of the state. That effort continues this spring as the AAUFL will play a spring league. The first week of play for of the three or four game league is April 12.
“We won’t play for a championship or anything, but we just want the kids to have an opportunity to play spring football like kids in Texas and Louisiana,” Swinton says. “If we are Arkansas is going to catch up, we need to do that.”
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