The inaugural edition of The College All Star Bowl last year was an all-South Carolina affair, players with birth or college ties to the state convening at Furman to drum up as much professional exposure as possible.
Take 2 became open to anybody in part because a couple competing events went on hiatus. South Dakota State offensive lineman Bryan Witzmann is plenty pleased about the format change, happily (and quietly) accepting a spot roughly three weeks ago. Invitations to all-star games have been relatively hard to come by for former Jackrabbits despite their recent run of FCS success.
The game airs at 5 p.m. tonight on CBS College Sports, the Wisconsinite Witzmann suiting up for the Nationals team coached by Clemson great Danny Ford.
"Being from a smaller school that exposure is the top thing you need," Witzmann said.
It will have been a a relatively quick trip: Arrive Tuesday, two practices Wednesday, two practices Thursday and the game tonight. Even the travel was easy in that Witzmann has been living and training in Atlanta for the last six weeks, a situation set up by his Montana-based agent Chris Gittings of OneWest Sports Agency. (He’s best known for representing Danny Woodhead.)
The 6-foot-7, 310-pound Witzmann said that he’s come a long way physically since the end of the season at SDSU, where he started every game for four years and earned multiple All-American honors. He hasn’t gained or lost much weight, but he feels leaner.
Tonight is a chance to show that.
"The Missouri Valley is competitive, but scouts want to see you playing against power-conference teams," Witzmann said. "I had pretty decent film against Nebraska, but they really didn’t have anything else. This whole other team is from the SEC, it seems like. A lot of quality."
Terry Vandrovec also posts regular updates on his Twitter page.