Posted on: February 1, 2010 1:45 am
By Chad Reuter , NFLDraftScout.com
The Texas vs. the Nation Challenge can become an afterthought on the postseason all-star game circuit, primarily because it is held in El Paso the week after the heralded Senior Bowl.
The success of recent participants has helped raise interest in the game among scouts and administrators.
Twenty-five players who participated in the Challenge last season were drafted in April, including immediate NFL contributors such as Bears wide receiver Johnny Knox (Abilene Christian), Packers offensive lineman T.J. Lang (Eastern Michigan), Bengals running back Bernard Scott (Abilene Christian) and Ravens cornerback Lardarius Webb (Nicholls State). Alumni from the 2008 game include left tackle Demetrius Bell (Bills/Northwestern State), wide receiver Pierre Garcon (Colts/Mount Union) and running back Tim Hightower (Cardinals/Richmond).
The 2010 rosters -- no longer fully tied to geographical boundaries -- are filled with small-school stars and solid players from major programs not invited to the East-West or Senior Bowl.