Jan. 1 is "Bearcats Day" in Cincinnati

CINCINNATI, OH - Mayor Mark Mallory has declared Jan. 1, 2009 "Cincinnati Bearcats Day" in Cincinnati in recognition of the University of Cincinnati's Big East Championship season and appearance in the BCS Orange Bowl.

The UC Bearcats take on the Virginia Tech Hokies Thursday night in the Orange Bowl in Miami, Florida.

"The UC Football team has been an inspiration to our city," Mayor Mallory said.  "As they take the field in the Orange Bowl, they will have the pride and support of all of Cincinnati rooting them to victory."

The Mayor was joined in wishing UC success in the Orange Bowl by Governor Ted Strickland who sent Coach Brian Kelly and the team a letter of congratulations and support.

Below is the language of the Mayor's Proclamation:

Be It Proclaimed:

        Whereas, the University of Cincinnati's football program is one of the nation's oldest, which began the sport in 1885; and

        Whereas, UC has been involved in several historical college football milestones starting with Dec. 8, 1888 when the Bearcats and Miami University (OH) engaged in the very first college football game played in the state of Ohio, launching a rivalry that is tied for the oldest in the game among major universities; and

        Whereas, coaching luminaries have patrolled the sidelines at Cincinnati, including College Football Hall of Fame coach Frank Cavanaugh, who began his 24-season career at UC; and

        Whereas, that coaching tradition has remained through the years and was once again realized in 2007, when Coach Brian Kelley began his first season with the Bearcats, posting a 10-3 record and earning a No. 17 ranking in the final Associated Press poll; and

         Whereas, the Bearcats began the 2008 season with hopes of surpassing the achievements of the previous year and solidifying their place in the Big East Conference; and

         Whereas, under the leadership of Coach Kelley, the UC Football Team rolled to a 10-2 record, Big East Conference Championship, and their first BCS Bowl Game in the Schools history; and

Whereas, the University of Cincinnati Bearcats will play Virginia Tech in Orange Bowl on January 1, 2009 in Miami, Florida;

Now, Therefore, I, Mark Mallory, Mayor of the City of Cincinnati do hereby proclaim January 1, 2009 as "Cincinnati Bearcats Day" in Cincinnati.