It's the good guys against the good guys at the second annual D.A.R.E. Bowl this weekend. Law enforcement officers from Moffat County and Routt County plan to match brawn on the football field as they raise money for the Drug Abuse Resistance Education (D.A.R.E.) program, which has been reaching out to children for years in Northwest Colorado.
The D.A.R.E. Bowl will begin at 1 p.m. Sunday at Steamboat Springs High School. The two sides will practice at 9 a.m. Saturday at Gardner Field.
D.A.R.E. officer Elise Andres said the game was fun last year.
"People like to watch cops beat up cops," she said. "It's technically a flag football game but it gets a little rougher than that and turns into tackle."
Last year, Routt County beat Moffat County, 43-6.
"And we basically gave that six points to them," Andres said.
The lawmen and women will give away prizes to attract people to the game. A ticket of $3 for individuals, $5 for families and $2 for students means an opportunity for great prizes, including a live auction where D.A.R.E. hopes to make most of its money.
"We've got some great prizes to auction off to the highest bidder, so bring your checkbooks," Andres said.
Law enforcement officers from both counties are taking part, including sheriff's deputies, city police officers, GRAMNET investigators, and even Charles Feldmann from the district attorney's office.
The star player on the Routt County lineup is lineman Pua "Killer" Utu, who reportedly played for the Rams when they were in Los Angeles.
"I hope that no one irritates him, because then we'll have several peace officers on workman's comp," Steamboat Springs Assistant Police Chief Art Fiebing said.
Bryce "the Jammer" Jackson, who coaches junior high football and is a former player at Puget Sound College, will be at quarterback for Routt County, as will Joel Rae, returning from his starring role as QB last year.
The speed for Routt County will come from tight end Mike "Flash" McNulty and Jerry Stabile, "a little guy who can run like lightning," Andres said.
On the other end of the scale, Dennis "Stonewall" Henson weighs in at about 400 pounds.
"He is our front line," Andres said.
The defense will be rounded out with Soda "the Brick" Davison, Nick "the Boz" Bosick, and Dayle "the Wall" Coyner, who was a Steamboat Springs Springs High School state champ 20 years ago.
Lest the Routt County side get complacent after the win last year, Moffat County Undersheriff Jerry Hoberg said his team has a few secrets to unload.
"After the thrashing we took last year, Routt County is in for a big surprise," Hoberg said. "We have a couple of secrets up our sleeves."
One game plan for Moffat County included "kidnapping" the jerseys each player paid to have made at the Shirt Stop in Steamboat, in exchange for a "ransom" of lunch.
"That's the kind of law enforcement you have there in Routt County, where someone can walk into a shirt shop and take something that's not theirs," Hoberg joked. "If they can't protect their goal line any better than their local businesses, that says it all."
Andres urged residents to attend the game, rain or shine.
"Come anyway, even if the weather is bad, because the only way we're going to raise money is if people show up," she said.