The West squad of college all-stars made itself at home on Florida’s west coast, as they handled the East team in the 88th Annual East-West Shrine Game. The game, held under the dome in Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Florida, featured 114 of the nation’s top college players in front of more than 18,000 fans and a national television audience on the NFL Network.
The West started the scoring less than 4 minutes into the game on 3-yard rush by Anthony Amos from Middle Tennessee State University. (PAT by Portland State’s Zach Brown was good.) That capped a 6-play, 17-yard drive that began when Terry Hawthorn (CB, Illinois) recovered a fumble on the game’s first play from scrimmage.
In the second quarter, QB Colby Cameron from Louisiana Tech led the East team on a 9-play, 49-yard scoring drive capped by a 48-yard field goal by Florida’s Caleb Sturgis with 1:49 left in the half.
The West immediately responded with a 37-yard kickoff return by Utah State’s Kerwynn Williams. Two plays later, West QB Matt Scott (Arizona) connected with Mississippi State’s Chad Bumphis for a 57-yard touchdown pass making the score 14-3.
Fifteen seconds later, with less than a minute left in the half, West CB Nigel Malone (Kansas State) intercepted a Cameron pass and returned it 30 yards for a score, giving the West a 21-3 edge at halftime.
In the second half, the teams traded interceptions and punts before the East capitalized on a muffed punt return with a 17-yard scoring drive. Army’s Trent Steelman, who was lined up as quarterback, scored on a 7-yard rush.
The West responded in the fourth quarter with QB Alex Carder from Western Michigan driving the team on an 80-yard drive that took 14 plays and nearly 8 minutes off the clock. Texas A&M RB Michael Christine scored on a 6-yard rush, making the score 28-10.
The East attempted to comeback, but the next drive was ended when Kansas State QB Collin Klein was intercepted by CB Khalid Wooten (Nevada). The West’s ensuing drive was thwarted by S Earl Wolff of North Carolina State, when he intercepted a third-down pass in the back of the end zone.
The East again drove down the field, ending the scoring with a Sturgis field goal with 1:24 left in the game.