East Carolina quarterback Philip Nelson was the biggest winner among in-state players participating in the two college football all-star games played Saturday. Taking the bulk of the snaps for the National team in the NFLPA Collegiate Bowl in Carson, Calif., Nelson completed 11 of 18 passes for 102 yards to lead his squad to a 27-7 victory. He also rushed for a 1-yard first quarter touchdown while drawing rave reviews from his coach in the game, former NFL head coach Mike Martz. “He’s really an exceptional player,” Martz said of Nelson after the game. “It’s exciting to see what he’s going to do in camp for somebody. I think Philip is a starter in the league. I’m certain of it. He’s a good leader and has a real presence.” In addition to Nelson, North Carolina running back T.J. Logan also played a major role in the National team’s win, rushing for 63 yards on 16 carries while catching a pair of passes for 28 yards. North Carolina’s Des Lawrence and Duke’s Breon Borders keyed a National defense that created three turnovers and allowed only a single touchdown. NC A&T running back Tarik Cohen rushed for 27 yards on four carries in a losing effort for the American team. Meanwhile, across the country at the East-West Shrine Game in St. Petersburg. Fla., UNC kicker Nick Weiler provided the East team with its only points of the game by making a 21-yard field goal in the second quarter of a 10-3 loss to the West. It was Weiler’s only attempt of the game. Other state players in the game included Appalachian State running back Marcus Cox, who caught two passes out of the backfield for 14 yards, and NC State cornerback Jack Tocho, who was credited with two tackles. The Wolfpack’s Joe Scelfo and the Tar Heels’ Lucas Crowley split time at center for the East while Wake Forest cornerback Brad Watson also played. Deacons’ linebacker Marquel Lee was selected for the game, but did not play because of an injury suffered earlier in the week at practice.
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A pair of 2016 first round draft choices took the North Carolina-Duke rivalry out west with an epic duel Friday. But it was a former Tar Heel big man who got passed over in this […]