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American vs. National



Saturday, January 18, 6 p.m. (et)

The Sports Network

GAME NOTES: NFL Draft-eligible players will put their talents on display at the StubHub Center on Saturday afternoon in the 3rd-annual NFLPA Collegiate Bowl.

Patrolling the sideline for the American squad is Denny Green, who made his mark in the NFL as the head coach of the Vikings and the Cardinals. Returning as head coach of the National squad is the legendary Dick Vermeil, who won the Rose Bowl as coach of UCLA in 1975 before enjoying an illustrious NFL career with the Eagles, Rams and Chiefs, winning a Super Bowl with St. Louis. Vermeil led the National team to victories in the 2012 (20-14) and 2013 (34-0) editions of this game.

Headlining the American offense is Missouri quarterback James Franklin, who, despite missing four games in the middle of the season with a shoulder injury, finished with 2,429 yards (on 62.1 percent completions) with 19 touchdowns to just six interceptions, while adding impressive rushing totals as well (510 yards, four TDS). Kenny Guiton also has a lot to prove. The Ohio State signal caller was stuck behind Braxton Miller on the depth chart but was brilliant in limited action early in the season (.688 completions, 749 yards, 14 TDs, two INTs). Also lining up under center for American will be UNLV's Caleb Herring (2,718 passing yards, 346 rushing yards, 29 total TDs, five INTs) and Sean Schroeder from Hawaii (2,960 yards, 28 TDs, 14 INTs).

American is only carrying two tailbacks -- Oklahoma's Roy Finch (347 yards) and Franklyn Quiteh (2,195 yards, 29 TDs), the Division II Player of the Year out of Bloomsburg. Fullbacks Kiero Small (Arkansas) and Chad Young (San Diego State) will also get to show their skills.

At receiver, Texas Tech's Eric Ward (83 receptions, 947 yards, eight TDs), Hawaii's Chris Gant (59 receptions, 973 yards, nine TDs) and Buffalo's Alex Neutz (61 receptions, 1,024 yards, 12 TDs) will all try to build upon impressive seasons. Small-school pass catchers Greg Hardin (North Dakota), Gerald Ford (Valdosta State), Tony Washington (Appalachian State) and Corey Washington (Newberry) will also be given a big stage to play on, while Brian Wozniak (Wisconsin) and Terrence Miller (Arizona) will represent the tight end position.

Anchoring the American defense is a pair of SEC linebackers in Kentucky's Avery Williamson (102 tackles) and Missouri's Andrew Wilson (113 tackles, 6.5 TFL). The squad also has impressive talent along the defensive line with Kasim Edebali (Boston College), Nate Askew (Texas A&M) and Seali'i Epenesa (UCLA) as well as in the defensive backfield with Ciante Evans (Nebraska) Demetrius Wright (USC) and CJ Barnett (Ohio State).

On the National side, Connor Shaw is expected to lead the charge at quarterback after posting an outstanding senior season at South Carolina, completing 63.4 percent of his passes for 2,447 yards, rushing for 558 yards and combining for 30 touchdowns while throwing just a single interception. Cincinnati QB Brendon Kay (.663 completions, 3,302 yards, 22 TDs, 12 INTs) will also get his chance to prove himself, as will Kolton Browning (ULM) and Dustin Vaughan (West Texas A&M).

Trey Watts out of Tulsa is arguably the most talented running back in this event, having displayed excellence both as a rusher (1,329 yards, 11 TDs) and a receiver (46 receptions, 395 yards, TD). James Sims (1,110 yards, seven TDs) was one of the only weapons on a lackluster Kansas team, and Anthony Wilkerson (353 yards, two TDs) was solid in limited reps for Stanford.

Isaiah Burse (99 receptions, 1,026 yards, six TDs) benefitted greatly from his future-NFL quarterback Derek Carr at Fresno State and is out to prove he's a high-quality playmaker. On the contrary, Albert Wilson out of Georgia State had very little talent surrounding him yet still finished with 71 receptions for 1,117 yards and eight touchdowns. Rounding out the receiving talent is Kadron Boone (LSU), Je'Ron Hamm (ULM), Darryl Surgent (Louisiana), Eric Thomas (Troy) and Martin Bayless Jr. (Central Methodist).

Defensively, Jimmy Legree is a high-impact defensive back out of South Carolina, as he racked up 55 tackles, 5.5 TFL and three interceptions this season. Oklahoma State linebacker Shaun Lewis (58 tackles, 7.5 TFL), Mississippi State linebacker Deonte Skinner (64 tackles), Syracuse linebacker Marquis Spruill (66 tackles, 14.5 TFL, 5.5 sacks) and Southern Miss defensive lineman Khyri Thornton (39 tackles, 6.5 TFL) are expected to be standouts for the unit as well.

Whether it be a proven producer, a player with great talent but limited by injuries over his career, an overachiever from a small program, or even a guy who didn't get his fair share of playing time on a elite team, every player in this game has something to show in order to improve their stock come NFL Draft time in May. Figure on event veteran Vermeil to continue his reign with the National squad.

Sports Network Predicted Outcome: National 38, American 35

01/17 13:51:52 ET

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Scoreboard
Local
Final
WAS 4
CAR 2
7:00pm Tonight
CHA
DET
 
Final
TAM 8
BOS 11
Final
STL 2
MIA 3
Final
WAS 0
NYM 2
Final
MIN 3
NYY 1
Final
DET 3
PIT 7
Final
BAL 3
TAM 4
Final
TOR 10
PHI 6
Final
TEX 10
CHC 15
Final
LOS 1
CWS 2
Final
MIL 4
CIN 10
Final
SFG 4
COL 3
Final
CLE 8
SEA 6
Final
ANA 10
OAK 13
Final
ARI 8
TEX 7
Final
ATL 5
HOU 8
Final
SDP 1
KAN 4
1:05pm Today
PHI
ATL
 
1:05pm Today
MIN
BOS
 
1:05pm Today
HOU
DET
 
1:05pm Today
NYY
TAM
 
1:05pm Today
BOS
TOR
 
1:05pm Today
MIA
WAS
 
1:10pm Today
NYM
STL
 
3:05pm Today
OAK
ANA
 
3:05pm Today
KAN
LOS
 
4:05pm Today
CIN
ARI
 
4:05pm Today
SEA
CWS
 
4:05pm Today
SFG
CLE
 
4:05pm Today
CHC
MIL
 
4:05pm Today
CWS
SDP
 
4:10pm Today
COL
TEX
 
7:05pm Tonight
BAL
PIT
 
Final
DET 105
ATL 95
Final
BRK 111
IND 106
Final
MIA 81
SAN 95
Final
LAC 106
GSW 110
7:00pm Tonight
CHA
DET
 
7:00pm Tonight
WAS
PHI
 
7:00pm Tonight
ORL
SAN
 
7:30pm Tonight
NYK
BRK
 
7:30pm Tonight
BOS
IND
 
8:00pm Tonight
MIL
CHI
 
8:00pm Tonight
OKC
DAL
 
8:00pm Tonight
HOU
SAC
 
8:00pm Tonight
MIN
TOR
 
9:00pm Tonight
UTA
DEN
 
10:00pm Tonight
POR
LAC
 
10:30pm Tonight
LAL
NOP
 
Final
TEMPL 57
MIAMI 60
Final
EVAN 79
TENNM 66
Final
NARZ 68
YALE 61
Final
ODU 60
STAN 67
8:00pm Tonight
LAMON
LOYC
 
Final
WAS 4
CAR 2
Final
BOS 3
FLA 2
Final
CLB 3
NJD 2
Final
DET 1
OTT 2
Final
TOR 3
TAM 1
Final
WIN 2
NYR 3
Final
NAS 4
VAN 5
7:30pm Tonight
BUF
TOR
 
8:00pm Tonight
PIT
PHI
 
10:00pm Tonight
ANA
EDM
 
10:30pm Tonight
SJS
COL