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MIAA, Sporting KC Excited for Football Championship

Sporting Park in Kansas City will host the Division II Football National Championship from 2014-2017.
(KANSAS CITY, Kan.) Cleanup continues at Sporting Park after celebrating Sporting KC's second Major League Soccer crown on Saturday, but now five days later, another championship is guaranteed next year for the facility.

The NCAA announced Wednesday that the NCAA Division II Football National Championship will come to Kansas City in 2014.

"The MIAA is so popular here in this area, we knew that this would be very attractive for our fans and for this community," MIAA commissioner Dr. Bob Boerigter said.

The MIAA's been represented in nine of the last 15 title games. Boerigter's hoping to see attendance rise now that the game is centrally located for the league.

"In several of those years when Pittsburg State and Northwest Missouri State were there, the crowd they played in front of on championship day was the smallest crowd they had played in front of all year. And we want to reverse that trend."

While the game is being moved to a soccer venue, Sporting Park was built with football in mind.

"We've always wanted to do football games," Sporting KC's Chief of Staff Greg Cotton said, "so the stadium itself was designed to be a football stadium as well as a soccer venue."

The stadium already has sleeves in the ground for football field goal posts, and a play clock was in the original design.

Sporting's state of the art facility will also enhance the fan's game day experience.

"It's the most technologically advanced stadium in the world. The things that fans can experience are just second to none," Boerigter said. "Fans are going to be able to download and app on to their phone, and actually watch replays of the game on their telephone while they're watching the action there in Sporting Kansas City Park. That obviously has been unprecedented in Division II."

As Florence, Ala. awaits its final national championship game on December 21st, Kansas City's looking forward to its first opportunity.

"I guarantee you that we'll put on a good show in the stadium and Kansas City will shine beautifully," Cotton said. "And I think everyone's going to want to come back year after year."
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