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Celebrities up the game

By Erik Spanberg
An actor from the TV show “S.W.A.T.” awarded Moore a title belt after a game of cornhole in California. Erik Spanberg

When the American Cornhole League calls out the “S.W.A.T.” team, they get the actual “S.W.A.T.” team. The CBS action series version, that is.

Co-stars Shemar Moore and David Lim “just caught the bug,” in the words of ACL Commissioner Stacey Moore, who last year visited Shemar Moore’s California home for a backyard competition. (Shemar Moore and Stacey Moore are not related.) Shemar Moore’s setup isn’t your run-of-the-mill backyard affair; it’s an ACL-spec, turf court with equipment recommended by pro ACL players.

Dubbed “Airmail City,” Moore’s Southern California home course first got the attention of ACL pros who began visiting for friendly games with the “S.W.A.T.” cast. When Stacey Moore visited, he paired with Shemar Moore and won the backyard competition. Shemar Moore awarded the commissioner a custom-made championship belt that sits on Stacey Moore’s desk in the ACL headquarters. It reads, “Casa Del Sham Cornhole Tournament Champion/Roll S.W.A.T.”

Last fall, Shemar Moore played ACL champion Trey Burchfield on CBS’s “The Talk,” adding more celebrity wattage into the sport. Later this year, in September, Shemar Moore’s “Airmail City” is going to be the site of an ACL-sanctioned, $100,000 winner-take-all event.

To further amplify the sport, ACL has brought in athletes, entertainers and other notables for competitions. Examples include ESPN’s Ryan McGee and Marty Smith; former Olympic softball pitcher Jennie Finch; and several past and present NFL players. Among those in the latter group: Sam Darnold, Doug Flutie, Daniel Jones, Mac Jones and DeVonta Smith.

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