Jean Bartels became the interim president of Georgia Southern University over the summer following the departure of Brooks Keel. Today, Bartels made her allegiance to the Eagles eternal with a Baptism in Beautiful Eagle Creek:
@PresBartels and our seniors getting baptized in Eagle Creek. pic.twitter.com/GtBZlkIOIt— Tom Kleinlein (@TKleinleinAD) August 11, 2015
Though partially blocked by an unfortunately placed head, Bartels can clearly be seen holding the hands of Matt Dobson and Antwione Williams, two Eagle seniors and standout members of the defensive unit, as she prepares for the plunge.
The school later provided a slightly better pic as further evidence:
In case you aren't aware, Beautiful Eagle Creek is one of a few thousand traditions created by Erk Russell, Georgia Southern's first coach. The "Beautiful" is more than a slight overstatement — the creek is literally a drainage ditch running behind the Eagles' practice field.
Russell gave said creek the BEC title as a metaphor for making the most of your circumstances, creating an inside joke of legendary proportions along the way. To this day, the team brings jugs of water from the creek and sprinkles them on the opponents' field at road games.
By wading through the south Georgia creek, Bartels has left no doubt as to her loyalty to the Boys in Blue.
She even threw in a prediction that the Eagles will repeat as Sun Belt Champs:
I'm official! First woman President @GeorgiaSouthern baptized in Beautiful Eagle Creek with the team Seniors! Prediction 8-0 and Bowl Game!— Jean Bartels (@PresBartels) August 11, 2015