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UCF celebrates 'national title' with Orlando block party

Knights stake claim to title after undefeated season

ORLANDO, Fla. – In recognition of an undefeated football season, the city of Orlando is throwing a national championship celebration for the University of Central Florida.

The family-friendly block party was held Monday evening along Church Street between Orange Avenue and Garland Avenue.

The event included a pep rally, national championship recognition and Mayor Buddy Dyer presented the team with a key to the city.

"We are proud of Orlando’s Hometown Team and hope fans from across Central Florida will come out to celebrate this memorable season,” Dyer said.

The party comes just a day after UCF's football team received a parade down Main Street, USA at Disney's Magic Kingdom.

"I don't think there's a better way to do it," UCF quarterback McKenzie Milton said.  "Being on a big float with the guys is an unreal feeling."

The Knights staked a claim for the 2017 national championship after their New Year's Day win against the Auburn Tigers in the Chick-Fil-A Peach Bowl.

While UCF was the only undefeated team in college football, they entered the bowl game ranked No. 12 by the College Football Playoff selection committee and were not given an opportunity to play for the national title.

"They did everything inside their control winning the games we had," UCF Athletic Director Danny White said.  "What's outside our control that fell in our favor is nobody else went undefeated. So, we feel strongly that we have a right to claim a national championship and that's why we're doing it."

The Knights' celebration began with the block party at 6 p.m. The national championship program started at 6:45 p.m.
 


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