Doc Holliday and Rakeem Cato speak at BAC banquet


Hundreds of people gathered in the Beckley-Raleigh Convention Center Sunday for the kick-off of the Big Atlantic Classic basketball tournament.

Jim Justice who is directing the tournament, is known to bring in big name speakers to this annual event. This year was no different. Marshall's head football coach Doc Holliday and quarterback Rakeem Cato spoke to the athletes.

"It's great to be able to give back a little bit, this fan base gives so much to us throughout the season," said Holliday.

After players, coaches and family members enjoyed their meals, Holliday gave insight on how to be successful on and off the field. A lot of attention was on Cato, who overcame many obstacles in his youth that made him into the player he is today.

"I think the example to all these kids out there is if Rakeem can get to where he is through the adversity he had to do, there's not anybody sitting back at that table that cant achieve their goals and dreams if they work extremely hard to get it done."

Cato mentioned his past and also spoke about being a leader and the importance of practicing.

"It's a blessing just to be here, just to be around great people, to be a knowledge and just having fun. Just looking back at where I came from to now, it's a blessing," said the quarterback.

Herd fans can breathe easy, the Cato, who ranks among the NFL prospects, will return for his senior year.

"I've made that decision since my freshman year of college. I knew I wanted to do all four years in college, learn more, learn the game more, become a better, student athlete. Become a better man."

Players and fans took pictures and got autographs from Holliday and Cato, all while preparing for the six day basketball event.

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