East-West Shrine Game 2014: Roster, Top Prospects for College All-Star Game

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East-West Shrine Game 2014: Roster, Top Prospects for College All-Star Game
Bradley Leeb-USA TODAY Sports

College football players from around the nation who have hopes of playing in the NFL have assembled in St. Petersburg, Fla., for the 2014 East-West Shrine Game, which takes place on Saturday, Jan. 18.

Though not as prestigious as the Senior Bowl, this is an excellent chance for prospects to make a name for themselves heading into the 2014 NFL Scouting Combine. From the first day of practice to the game itself, these young men will be under the microscope by NFL scouts.

This East-West Shrine Game isn't just about football, however, as detailed by its official website:

In addition to serving as one of the NFL’s primary sources for eligible players, the game benefits Shriners Hospitals for Children®, and helps support its mission of providing expert care to children in need, conducting innovative research and offering educational opportunities to medical professionals.

Former Atlanta Falcons and Houston Oilers head coach Jerry Glanville is coaching the East team, while Houston Texans defensive coordinator and former Kansas City Chiefs head coach Romeo Crennel will coach the West squad.     

Glanville, who coached the losing team last year, appreciates the dual nature of the event, via ShrineGame.com“In the end, it’s really about everyone having a good time in support of great cause.”

Here's a look at the rosters for both teams, followed by a closer examination of the top prospects expected to play in the East-West Shrine Game. 

 

Rosters

East

Offense
Pos # First Name Last Name HT WT School
C 74 Chris Elkins 6'4" 300 Youngstown State
C 67 Zac Kerin 6'5" 300 Toledo
C 64 James Stone 6'3" 302 Tennessee
G 73 Zach Fulton 6'5" 323 Tennessee (Injured)
G 77 Antwan Lowery 6'4" 305 Rutgers
G 63 John Urschel 6'3" 308 Penn State
OT 71 Kyle Bryant 6'7" 320 Youngstown State
OT 52 Justin Britt 6'6" 315 Missouri (Injured)
OT 52 Donald Hawkins 6'5" 310 Texas
OT 66 Laurent Duvernay-Tardif 6'5" 315 McGill (Canada)
OT 72 Matt Feiler 6'7" 325 Bloomsburg
OT 76 Matt Hall 6'10" 320 Belhaven (Miss.)
QB 11 Jimmy Garoppolo 6'3" 222 Eastern Illinois
QB 6 Jordan Lynch 6' 216 Northern Illinois
QB 9 Jeff Mathews 6'4" 229 Cornell
RB 24 Zach Bauman 5'10" 200 Northern Arizona
RB 27 LaDarius Perkins 5'10" 190 Mississippi State
RB 20 Rajion Neal 5'10" 212 Tennessee
TE 82 Alex Bayer 6'4" 253 Bowling Green
TE 8 Crockett Gillmore 6'6" 245 Colorado State
TE 18 Blake Jackson 6'3" 235 Oklahoma State
WR 80 Jeremy Gallon 5'8" 187 Michigan
WR 84 Matt Hazel 6'3" 190 Coastal Carolina
WR 1 Allen Hurns 6'3" 195 Miami (Fla.)
WR 81 Patrick Laird 6'3" 219 Army
WR 85 Ja'mes Logan 6'3" 195 Mississippi
WR 88 Erik Lora 5'11" 190 Eastern Illinois
K 16 Zach Hocker 6'0" 182 Arkansas

ShrineGame.com

Defense
Pos # First Name Last Name HT WT School
CB 21 Ricardo Allen 5'9" 186 Purdue
CB 22 Travis Carrie 6' 212 Ohio (Injured)
CB 26 Ross Cockrell 6' 190 Duke
CB 3 Pierre Desir 6'2" 206 Lindenwood
CB 15 Phillip Gaines 6'1" 185 Rice
CB 23 Andre Hal 6'0" 185 Vanderbilt
CB 5 Nevin Lawson 5'10" 186 Utah State
DL 96 Jay Bromley 6'4" 293 Syracuse
DL 98 Will Clarke 6'7" 273 West Virginia
DL 90 Bruce Gaston, Jr. 6'2" 305 Purdue
DL 94 Zachariah Kerr 6'2" 310 Delaware
DL 97 Demonte McAllister 6'2" 290 Florida State
DL 56 Garrison Smith 6'3" 297 Georgia
DL 99 Ethan Westbrooks 6'4" 263 West Texas A&M
DL 57 Kerry Wynn 6'5" 270 Richmond
LB 13 Xavius Boyd 6'2" 243 Western Kentucky
LB 2 Preston Brown 6'2" 255 Louisville
LB 40 Glenn Carson 6'3" 235 Penn State
LB 4 Andrew Jackson 6'1" 257 Western Kentucky
LB 46 Derrell Johnson 6'2" 263 East Carolina
LB 34 DeDe (Devekeyan) Lattimore 6'1" 237 South Florida
LB 53 Cody Peterson 6'3" 228 Navy (Injured)
LB 41 Johnny Millard 6'3" 240 Cal Poly
S 10 Tre Boston 6'1" 190 North Carolina
S 17 A.J. Marshall 6'0" 190 Wake Forest
S 29 Hakeem Smith 6'2" 188 Louisville
S 12 Dezmen Southward 6'2" 214 Wisconsin (Injured)
S 14 Jemea Thomas 5'10" 195 Georgia Tech
P 30 Steven Clark 6'5" 232 Auburn

ShrineGame.com

 

West

Offense
Pos # First Name Last Name HT WT School
C 63 Dillon Farrell 6'5" 290 New Mexico
C 64 Gabe Ikard 6'3" 290 Oklahoma
C 58 Khalil Wilkes 6'3" 290 Stanford
G 68 Christopher Burnette 6'2" 322 Georgia
G 79 Dakota Dozier 6'4" 291 Furman
G 75 Ryan Groy 6'5" 320 Wisconsin
G 72 Austin Wentworth 6'5" 300 Fresno State
OT 77 Kevin Graf 6'6" 304 USC
OT 76 Danny Kistler Jr. 6'8" 315 Montana
OT 78 Charles Leno, Jr. 6'4" 295 Boise State
OT 71 Jeremiah Sirles 6'6" 312 Nebraska
QB 17 Keith Price 6'1" 202 Washington
QB 11 Tommy Rees 6'1" 215 Notre Dame
QB 10 Keith Wenning 6'3" 220 Ball State
RB 24 Brennan Clay 5'11" 198 Oklahoma
RB 20 Timothy Flanders 5'9" 210 Sam Houston State
RB 37 Anthony LaCoste 5'10" 205 Air Force
RB 31 Ben Malena 5'9" 195 Texas A&M
TE 83 Ted Bolser 6'6" 255 Indiana
TE 82 Kaneakua Friel 6'5" 250 BYU
TE 48 Jordan Najvar 6'6" 255 Baylor
WR 2 John Brown 5'11" 170 Pitt State
WR 18 Quincy Enunwa 6'2" 225 Nebraska
WR 81 Seantavius Jones 6'3" 200 Valdosta State
WR 89 Chandler Jones 5'11" 175 San Jose State
WR 7 TJ Jones 5'11" 190 Notre Dame (Injured)
WR 6 Bernard Reedy 5'9" 175 Toledo
K 4 Anthony Fera 6'2" 208 Texas

ShrineGame.com

Defense
Pos # First Name Last Name HT WT School
CB 22 Bene Benwikere 6'0" 192 San Jose State
CB 23 Carrington Byndom 6' 180 Texas
CB 32 E.J. Gaines 5'11" 195 Missouri (Injured)
CB 12 Bennett Jackson 6' 195 Notre Dame
CB 16 Rashaad Reynolds 5'11" 186 Oregon State
CB 5 Shaquille Richardson 6'1" 188 Arizona
CB 25 Marcus Williams 5'11" 192 North Dakota State
DL 97 Beau Allen 6'3" 334 Wisconsin
DL 70 Justin Ellis 6'2" 357 Louisiana Tech
DL 95 Evan Gill 6'3" 291 Manitoba (Canada)
DL 98 Derrick Hopkins 6'0" 311 Virginia Tech
DL 93 Cassius Marsh 6'4" 268 UCLA
DL 90 Josh Mauro 6'6" 275 Stanford
DL 96 Chidera Uzo-Diribe 6'3" 250 Colorado
DL 99 Larry Webster, III 6'7" 250 Bloomsburg
DL 92 Zach Moore 6'6" 285 Concordia (Injured)
FS 27 Stephen Obeng-Agyapong 5'10" 205 Penn State
LB 56 Shaquil Barrett 6'2" 250 Colorado State
LB 40 Nate Dreiling 6'4" 226 Pitt State
LB 42 Devon Kennard 6'3" 255 USC
LB 55 Prince Shembo 6'1" 250 Notre Dame
LB 41 Tyler Starr 6'5" 250 South Dakota
LB 44 Max Bullough 6'3" 245 Michigan State
S 3 Alden Darby 5'11" 195 Arizona State
S 8 Daytawion Lowe 5'11" 205 Oklahoma State
S 1 Sean Parker 5'10" 195 Washington
S 9 Daniel Sorensen 6'2" 208 BYU
S 21 Brock Vereen 6'0" 202 Minnesota
P 15 Richie Leone 6'3" 215 Houston

ShrineGame.com

 

Top Prospects

Jimmy Garoppolo, QB, Eastern Illinois 

Bradley Leeb-USA TODAY Sports

It's not easy making it into the NFL from the FCS, but Jimmy Garoppolo will follow in Tony Romo's footsteps (a fellow Eastern Illinois quarterback) this spring. Furthermore, he could end up becoming a hot prospect before the scouting process comes to its conclusion.

Garoppolo got off to a good start during the first practice of the week in St. Petersburg, according to Bleacher Report's Michael Schottey, who is attending the event:

The top passer of the day, in my estimation, was Eastern Illinois' Jimmy Garoppolo. Though he did not live up to his listed height of 6'3" nor look to have as much accuracy as he does on film, he displayed more-than-adequate zip on passes to every level of the field and was able to consistently throw tight spirals with little wobble at the top of their arc. 

Garoppolo put up jaw-dropping numbers for the Panthers in 2013, completing 66 percent of his passes for 5,050 yards with 53 touchdowns and just nine interceptions in 14 games. Those are better numbers than the ones Peyton Manning put up, considering Manning did what he did in 16 games against pro competition. 

For his efforts, the quarterback won the Walter Payton Award, becoming the second player (Romo was the first) from Eastern Illinois to win the prestigious honor. Garoppolo isn't the only quarterback turning heads this week, though, which brings us to the next man who could make it big at the next level. 

 

Jeff Mathews, QB, Cornell

Size isn't everything, but it sure helps if you have it. 

Measuring in at 6'4" and 229 pounds, Jeff Mathews out of Cornell features size that's comparable to that of Andrew Luck, and he has a tremendous arm to boot. He showed off his arm during practice, as noted by ESPN's Adam Caplan:

Arm strength, accuracy and anticipation are all vitally important to playing the quarterback position in the NFL. Windows don't stay open long against NFL defensive backs, and quarterbacks who wait for them to open up usually end up turning the ball over. 

Compared to Garoppolo, Mathews' stats weren't as impressive in 2013, but stats sometimes lie about the potential of a player. For the record, he completed 63.3 percent of his passes for 2,953 yards with 22 touchdowns and 13 interceptions. 

 

E.J. Gaines, CB, Missouri

Missouri cornerback E.J. Gaines is the best overall player at the East-West Shrine Game. 

At 5'11" and 195 pounds, he possesses enough size to defend the NFL's top receivers. His penchant for physical play at the line of scrimmage makes him an intriguing prospect for teams that employ strong man-to-man tendencies on the perimeter.

Furthermore, he showed his ability to play bigger than his frame when he shut down Mike Evans (6'5" and 225 pounds) out of Texas A&M in late November. Evans caught just four passes for eight yards in that game, thanks to the smothering presence of Gaines in his hip pocket, and ESPN's Louis Riddick marveled at his explosiveness against the much bigger receiver:

Gaines picked off five passes in his senior season, and he totaled eight in his career at Missouri. He possesses all the physical tools to become successful in the NFL, and a strong showing in this game will further boost his draft stock. 

 

Justin Ellis, DT, Louisiana Tech

Justin Ellis might be able to tell you where the beef is

Chuck Cook-USA TODAY Sports

At 6'2" and 357 pounds, he's a massive man and a monster to deal with in the trenches, as Josh Norris of Rotoworld.com pointed out. Norris also noted what the defensive tackle could do to improve:

Ellis gets great push up front. In fact, he could improve his anchor against double teams with a wider base and lower pad level. It would be no surprise if Ellis outperforms his peers in individual pass rushing drills. He finds contact through his hands and extends with powerful leg drive.

You wouldn't expect a man of Ellis' size to be much of a pass-rusher, but his stats illustrate Norris' point: 9.5 tackles for a loss and 2.5 sacks in his career. 

If Ellis can improve his conditioning and continue to hit the weight room, then he'll be a terror in the NFL in the middle of one lucky defense. 

 

Follow me on Twitter @JesseReed78 

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