Unless NCAA rules change, the Shrine Bowl won’t be back at Memorial Stadium in 2013. Schools in the FBS and FCS cannot host all-star games under a rule the NCAA enacted last fall.
Steve Nelson of Lincoln, the Shrine’s executive director, said the NCAA allowed his group to use the stadium in 2012 because there was an existing contract.
“Memorial Stadium has been an awesome venue. It’s been a big thing for the kids, many who only get to play here this once,” Nelson said. “In any event, the Shrine Bowl is going to go on.”
He said Seacrest Field in Lincoln, where the 2005 Shrine Bowl was played, is a possibility for next year’s game that will be played on June 1.
Quarterback duty not new for Ott
When the South needed a yard for its first offensive touchdown, it inserted Iowa recruit Drew Ott of Giltner at quarterback. Ott smashed across from the 1 for a 14-3 lead late in the second quarter.
Ott said he played quarterback for the Hornets twice last season, against Harvard and Howells. “And I was 6 for 6 passing, 100 percent.”
Would his Shrine coaches have let him throw?
“I don’t think they trusted me that much,’’ he said.
New haircuts sign of team unity
With few exceptions, the North’s helmets were hiding Mohawk haircuts. The clippers came out midweek, players said, with quarterback Ryker Fyfe of Grand Island the first to be shorn.
“Graham Nabity and Mitch Alexander cut it off,’’ Fyfe said. “If the quarterback did it, they figured, then everybody would.”
So what explained the red-dyed long locks of Scottsbluff linebacker Seth Rohrer? Dyed hair was the original team-bonding idea.
The North tried to get head coach Travis Hawk of Alliance to conform to the new hairstyle.
“I fibbed a little and said we had family photos coming up,’’ he said.
South coaches pooled knowledge
Credit Papillion-La Vista’s Jeff Govier — an assistant for the South — for the team’s hurry-up offense, head coach Leigh Schmale of Elmwood-Murdock said.
“I saw his team play Southeast in the semifinals, and I wanted to find out how he gets the kids to the line of scrimmage so quickly,” Schmale said. “It really turned out to be a momentum-changer for us.”
Simpson, Reilly named MVPs
Fellow Nebraska walk-ons Brad Simpson of Ralston and Brandon Reilly of Lincoln Southwest received the game’s most valuable player awards in a vote of sportswriters and broadcasters.
Simpson had six tackles, including a sack on the game’s opening play, and scored on a 21-yard interception return two plays after the sack.
“We came out with a couple big plays on defense,’’ Simpson said, “and that shut (the North) up for a little bit.”
Reilly had 118 yards and a touchdown on six receptions from quarterback Derek McGinnis of Crete. Reilly was 2 yards from the Shrine Bowl receiving-yardage record of 120 set last year by Gretna’s Cole Spurgeon for the South.
“In practice all the time, Derek was always finding me,’’ Reilly said. “It was just good chemistry. He’s a good quarterback.”
North dusts off bounceroosky pass
Almost 30 years after Nebraska used it, the bounceroosky pass (lateral) that Irving Fryar caught from Turner Gill and threw downfield to Mitch Krenk in 1982 was successful again on the Memorial Stadium turf.
The North picked up 36 yards as quarterback Ryker Fyfe bounced it to Grand Island teammate Sam Foltz, who threw to Cole Chvatal of Wahoo Neumann. It led to Terry Grigsby scoring on a 17-yard pass play to end his team’s scoring.