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Destroyers Trim Opening Day Roster To 23

February 24, 2008 - Arena Football League (1987-2008) (AFL I) Columbus Destroyers

COLUMBUS, OH - The defending National Conference champion Columbus Destroyers, presented by Germain, have cut their roster to 23 players for their season opening game against the Colorado Crush on Sunday, March 2. Kickoff is set for 4 p.m. (ET) at Pepsi Center in Denver. The Destroyers will make their home debut on Saturday, March 15 against in-state rival Cleveland Gladiators on Huntington Field at Nationwide Arena with kickoff slated for 7 p.m.

To meet the AFL roster limit, the Destroyers have waived defensive lineman Jon Simmons; defensive back Ukee Dozier; linebackers Lee Foliaki, Chris Hunsaker and Nick Reid; offensive linemen Dave Dean and Jacob Hobbs; wide receiver Eugene Baker; and quarterbacks Brian Jones and Justin Zwick. The Destroyers have also released defensive back Nick Ward and wide receivers Charles Pauley and C.J. Johnson.

The 23-man active roster includes 10 players returning from a 2007 squad that helped the Destroyers win the franchise's first National Conference title. In addition, five players will make their debut in the AFL.

The Destroyers will kickoff their 2008 home schedule against division rival Cleveland Gladiators in the "Battle of the Buckeye State" presented by Columbus Worthington Air on Saturday, Mar. 15. Kickoff at Nationwide Arena is slated for 7 p.m. The first 10,000 fans will receive a 2008 Destroyers magnet schedule. During the post game autograph session, presented by Nationwide, fans will be able to win a $10 gift certificate in the Giant Eagle Ham Toss.

WE BELIEVE Saturdays are made for football. The Destroyers 2008 home schedule features seven Saturday night games and one Monday night contest. For a limited time fans can purchase two season tickets, two AFL replica footballs, two Destroyers hats for ONLY $222. The package can be purchased by calling (877) COLS-AFL. Single game tickets are on sale now at the Nationwide Arena Ticket Office, ticketmaster Ticket Centers, ticketmaster.com and all FSN Ohio Blue Line team stores located at The Mall at Tuttle Crossing, Chiller Easton, Chiller Dublin and Chiller North. Groups of 10 or more are eligible for group rates by calling (614) 246-HITS.

ESPN's coverage of the Russell Athletic AFL on ESPN debuts Saturday, Mar. 1 on ABC (HD) when the Dallas Desperados visit the Georgia Force with kickoff set for 1 p.m. (ET).

2008 Columbus Destroyers Playing Roster (Alphabetical)

No. Name Pos. Hgt. Wgt. College DOB Exp

24 Coggins, Nate DB 6-1 210 West Georgia 9/25/78 4

77 Douglas, Cody OL 6-4 330 Tennessee 11/25/83 R

68 Duncan, Howard OL 6-4 300 Oklahoma 11/15/80 3

2 Freeman, Rober' DB 5-9 185 Clark Atlanta (GA) 8/28/81 4

87 Greetis, Brad FB 6-3 280 Cal Lutheran 5/13/78 3

23 Haugabrook, Sidney DB 5-10 183 Delaware 3/11/82 2

69 Hilliard, Jason OL 6-6 320 Louisville 6/29/81 2

1 Kinney, Kelvin DL 6-7 280 Virginia State 12/31/72 9

8 Lee, Derek WR 6-5 225 Tennessee Tech 9/26/81 4

3 Lewis, Mark K 6-0 200 Florida International 3/25/79 5

4 Marshall, Rasheed WR 6-1 190 West Virginia 7/11/81 R

11 Nagy, Matt QB 6-2 210 Delaware 4/24/78 6

6 Neal, Tremaine LB 6-3 225 Valdosta State 6/10/76 5

5 Patterson, Perry QB 6-4 242 Syracuse 3/31/84 R

91 Purnell, Prentice DL 6-3 320 West Georgia 6/2/82 3

70 Rabatin, Will OL 6-2 305 Louisville 8/25/82 2

17 Russell, Calvin WR 6-0 198 Tuskegee 6/14/83 R

9 Shelley, Jason WR 6-2 196 Central State (OH) 8/5/74 7

33 Thompson, Leroy LB 6-3 270 Delaware State 1/23/71 13

21 Underwood, E.J. DB 6-1 185 Pikeville 8/4/83 R

32 Wells, Harold FB 6-2 270 Gardner Webb 5/25/83 3

94 Williams, Tony DL 6-2 295 Memphis 7/9/75 R

92 Wilson, Gillis DL 6-3 285 Southern 10/15/77 5

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