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CARROLLTON — It’s one of the most anticipated events in all of sports — a day when the eyes of the world are fixed on America’s game. We’re talking about the Puppy Bowl, the true test of canine heart and determination.

The Puppy Bowl has been airing every Super Bowl Sunday since 2005, and it’s a great cause. All the puppies showcased come from shelters around the country.

This year, there’s a local pup set to represent North Texas. His name is Darby, a flop-eared Jack Russell mix who beat out 80 other puppies around the country to earn a starting spot in this year’s Puppy Bowl.

Darby’s owners, Ian Fagerstrom and Sandon Spalding, adopted him from Operation Kindness and had no idea they had picked an athletic superstar.

“We weren’t aware that Darby was a celebrity until after the fact,” Sandon explained. “About a week after we had adopted him, we were contacted by Len and was told that he had flown to New York and was involved with the Puppy Bowl.”

Jim Hanophy, CEO of Operation Kindness, says Darby is perfect for the Puppy Bowl, “The folks from Animal Planet were looking for an animal with a lot of character and spunk and he just fit the bill.”

So, what skills set Darby apart? Sandon says he’s in his prime, “He can jump to my shoulders standing up and he’s quite a runner.”

Even though the Cowboys let us down this season, you still have a dog in the race on Super Bowl Sunday!