View Full Version : App Player to be on Late Show with Craig Ferguson

December 18th, 2005, 12:39 PM
Appalachian's Stokes Set to Appear on "The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson" Monday night

by Appalachian Sports Information
December 18, 2005

BOONE, N.C. -- Fresh off winning the NCAA Division I-AA national championship on Friday night, Appalachian State University football player and war hero Brian Stokes has been invited to represent the Mountaineers on CBS’s “The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson” on Monday evening, Dec. 19. The “Late Late Show” airs at 12:37 a.m. (following the Late Show with David Letterman) on most CBS stations across the nation. On Charlotte’s WBTV (Ch. 3), the “Late Late Show” goes on the air at 1:07 a.m.

The 27-year-old Stokes came to Appalachian as a freshman in January 2005 following a four-year stint in the United States Marine Corps, including two tours of duty in Iraq.

A football standout at Burlington Williams High School in the mid-1990s, Stokes was a Shrine Bowl participant and invited walk-on at East Carolina in 1997. Following an injury, Stokes left ECU before eventually enlisting in the Marine Corps in 2000. He was deployed to more than 10 countries during his time in the Marines, including the two stints in Iraq. He served in more than 200 combat missions during his second tour in Iraq in 2004, including the invasion of Fallujah. For his efforts, Stokes received a Navy Achievement Medal for Combat Valor and is being considered for a Purple Heart.

Following the end of active duty in November 2004, Stokes and fellow Marine Wayne Norman visited Appalachian in hopes of re-enrolling in college on the G.I. Bill. But Stokes still had dreams of playing college football and met with ASU head coach Jerry Moore, who invited both Stokes and Norman to join the Mountaineers for winter conditioning. They were greeted with an ovation when Moore introduced them to their new teammates.

Stokes went on to become an integral part of Appalachian’s special teams during its run to its first-ever national championship. He accumulated five tackles in 14 games, but was designated as the Mountaineers’ “wedge-buster” on kickoff coverage, assigned to go full speed down the field into the first line of blockers to allow teammates an unabated route to the ball carrier. In its only game of the season without Stokes, the playoff opener versus Lafayette that Stokes sat out of due to a concussion, Appalachian allowed 26 yards per kickoff return, a mark that was significantly higher than when its special-teams ace was in the lineup.

Stokes and the Mountaineers capped off their storybook season with a 21-16 victory over Northern Iowa in Friday night’s national championship game in Chattanooga, Tenn.