Local football standouts going bowling: Frisco, Prosper well-represented during college bowl slate

Utah freshman Jaylen Dixon, pictured in previous action with Lone Star last season, teamed up with high school teammate Jason Shelley at Utah this season.

File Photo

With the holidays comes another round of college football bowl games, and there has been no shortage of local representation on the NCAA gridiron in the bowls that have already taken place.

Several Frisco and Prosper-area football alumni have been featured during bowl season as schools close out their respective 2017 campaigns. Some got the chance to play in the state, some even here locally in the Zaxby’s Heart of Dallas Bowl, and many enjoyed their first-ever taste of bowl season.

Here’s a look at the various area athletes rostered by teams that went bowling this season.

Celebration Bowl

North Carolina A&T 21, Grambling State 14

Jordan Jones (Grambling State, Frisco Lone Star, TE, RS-Soph.)

Jones, a versatile 6-foot-2 tight end out of Lone Star, made quite the impact for the Tigers’ offense this season with five touchdown receptions. In the bowl game loss to North Carolina A&T, he hauled in two catches for nine yards and a touchdown.

R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl

Troy 50, North Texas 30

Turner Smiley (North Texas, Frisco Wakeland, WR, Sr.)

Smiley had quite the performance for the Mean Green in the 20-point defeat to the Trojans. The Wakeland alumnus capped off his senior campaign with four catches for 48 yards and a touchdown in the loss, and finished the season with a career-high 623 receiving yards and five scores.

Las Vegas Bowl

Boise State 38, Oregon 28

Robert Mahone (Boise State, Prosper, RB, RS-Fr.)

The Prosper product stepped out on the scene for the Broncos this season, and made a late splash in the team’s bowl victory over Oregon. Against the Ducks, Mahone carried the ball 12 times for 34 yards as Boise State narrowly edged the Ducks in Vegas.

Raycom Media Camellia Bowl

Middle Tennessee State 35, Arkansas State 30

Bubba Ogbebor (Arkansas State, Frisco Heritage, WR, Soph.)

Ogbebor transferred from Boise State during the offseason and was forced to sit out his sophomore season with Arkansas State due to NCAA rules.

DXL Frisco Bowl

Louisiana Tech 51, SMU 10

Merek Pierce (SMU, John Paul II/Frisco, RB, Soph.), Nick Natour (SMU, Frisco lone Star, OL, Jr.), Jacob Todora (SMU, Frisco Wakeland, OL, RS-Fr.)

It’s only fitting that a trio of former Frisco athletes competed in the first annual DXL Frisco Bowl that was held as Toyota Stadium.

Birmingham Bowl

South Florida 38, Texas Tech 34

Texas Tech freshman Dawson Deaton (73), pictured in previous action with Frisco last season, celebrates a touchdown in a victory over Pleasant Grove.

Jack Anderson (Texas Tech, Frisco, OL, Fr.), Colin Yang (Texas Tech, Frisco Heritage, OL, RS-Fr.), Dawson Deaton (Texas Tech, Frisco, OL, Fr.)

Texas Tech head coach Kliff Kingsbury and his staff landed a pair of steals on the offensive line when they snagged Anderson and Deaton, who were two of the more highly recruited offensive linemen in the state a year ago.

Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl

Army 42, San Diego State 35

Jaxon Deaton (Army, Frisco, OL, Soph.)

Deaton and the Black Knights used a 21-7 fourth quarter rally to comeback and defeat the Aztecs in the Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl.

Hawai’i Bowl

Fresno State 33, Houston 27

Kordell Snyder (Houston, Frisco, OL, RS-Fr.)

Snyder is another talented offensive lineman to come out of Frisco High School in the recent years.

Zaxby’s Heart of Dallas Bowl

Utah 30, West Virginia 14

Jason Shelley (Utah, Frisco Lone Star, QB, Fr.), Jaylen Dixon (Utah, Frisco Lone Star, WR, Fr.)

Two of the more recognizable names on this list based off of their stellar high school careers, Shelley and Dixon look to make a splash on the colligate level in their sophomore campaigns next season.

Valero Alamo Bowl

Stanford vs. TCU

Ranthony Texada (TCU, Frisco Centennial, CB, Sr.), Lucas Reynolds (TCU, Frisco, LB, RS-Fr.)

Texada, who was a standout throughout his high school career with the Titans, looks to finish his senior year strong against Stanford, and has recorded two sacks and an interception this season.

Belk Bowl

Texas A&M vs. Wake Forest, today at 12 p.m.

Cade Prendergast (Texas A&M, Prosper, DB, Fr.)

Prendergast, who was a wide receiver in high school with the Eagles, has made the move to defensive back with the Aggies in his freshmen season.

Nova Home Loans Arizona Bowl

Utah State vs. New Mexico State, today at 4:30 p.m.

Austin Shaw (New Mexico State, Frisco, DB, Soph.)

Shaw, who was a two-star recruit out of high school, will look to see more action on the field in his junior campaign in 2018.

AutoZone Liberty Bowl

Iowa State vs. Memphis, tomorrow at 11:30 a.m.

Kene Nwangwu (Iowa State, Frisco Heritage, RB, Soph.)

After suffering an Achilles injury last spring, Nwangwu returned to action this fall with the Cyclones. The 6-foot-1 running back out of Heritage has carried the rock 27 times this season for 133 yards, and has seen more action as of late after missing four consecutive games in the middle of the year.

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