Big turnout for Big Green

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Fans flock to see Snyder, support Marshall athletics

By JIM WALKER/Tribune Sports Editor

If Mark Snyder wants big crowds at Marshall’s football stadium, he’s off to a good start.

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Approximately 75 fans jammed End Zone Pizza Tuesday to hear the Marshall head football coach speak in a promotion for the Big Green scholarship organization.

“This was a nice crowd. We need this kind of support. We need the people of Ironton and the Tri-State to get behind the Herd,” Snyder said.

Sam Stanley, director of athletic development for the Big Green, was pleased with the turnout.

“This was a nice crowd. It was one of our best crowds,” Stanley said. “I think we signed up 25 new members. All that money helps the Big Green fund. We’re very grateful to the people here.”

Stanley hopes to host an even bigger event next year in Ironton.

The Big Green Foundation funds scholarships for all athletic programs at Marshall University.

Snyder, who spoke to the crowd, drew raffle tickets for gifts, signed autographs and posed for pictures, said the Herd is already preparing for its season opener Sept. 2 at West Virginia.

“We started (Monday). We’re getting better. I think we’ll be ready for them,” Snyder said of the Mountaineers, ranked in the top 10 of almost every preseason poll.

West Virginia beat Marshall 42-31 in 1997 and leads the series 5-0.