A West Virginia University professor is challenging history buffs to imagine the Civil War on a whole new playing field.

Peter S. Carmichael, Eberly Family Professor of Civil War Studies at WVU , will use football as an analogy for historical events by creating an all-star team of Civil War officers during a presentation at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 12.

His talk,Civil War Generals Take to the Football Gridiron,will be at the Norman Fagan Theatre at the Cultural Center in Charleston. The lecture is free and open to the public as part of the Collegiate Series presented by the West Virginia Division of Culture and History.

Imagining the positions that Robert E. Lee or Ulysses S. Grant might play on a football team offers new ways of thinking about leadership during the United Statesbloodiest conflict, Carmichael said. He will offer his lineup for an all-star team of Union and Confederate generals as a way to better understand why military professionals either enjoyed glory or suffered defeat on the battlefield.

This talk provides an opportunity to take my research and make it accessible to a broader audience,Carmichael said.

A renowned scholar on the South and the Civil War, Carmichael came to WVU in 2007 to help establish WVU s Civil War Studies Program. He works with doctoral students, teaches courses at the undergraduate level and engages in public outreach.

The program strengthens the graduate-level history curriculum in the Eberly College of Arts and Sciences at WVU and offers students the chance to work with 19th century scholars whose research overlaps.

Carmichael joined the WVU faculty in 2007. He received a bachelors in history from Indiana University at Indianapolis in 1988 and a masters and doctorate from The Pennsylvania State University in 1992 and 1996. He was named a Mellon Research Fellow at the Virginia Historical Society in 2002 and also served as a scholar-in-residence at the Gettysburg National Military Park.

Carmichaels appearance at the Cultural Center is co-sponsored by the Eberly College of Arts and Sciences and the West Virginia Humanities Council.