TCU sends three to Senior Bowl

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    An award-winning trio of Horned Frogs that comprises quarterback Andy Dalton, center Jake Kirkpatrick and wide receiver Jeremy Kerley will play in the 2011 Under Armour Senior Bowl this Saturday.

    The Senior Bowl is an annual game that showcases the nation’s top senior collegiate players. It is one of the last chances for players to demonstrate their talents before the NFL draft in April.

    Teams are defined regionally as players are chosen to represent the North or South teams, depending on their school’s location. The three Frogs represented in this year’s Senior Bowl will join other top collegiate players on the South team.

    The game itself will be coached by staffs from two NFL teams. Personnel from all 32 NFL teams will also be in attendance at the game and all other events associated with it.

    This year’s game will be played in Mobile, Ala., at Ladd-Peebles Stadium. Kickoff is scheduled for 3 p.m. CST. The NFL Network will televise the game and all practices leading up to kickoff.

    Coming off the celebration of the Frogs’ Rose Bowl victory, Dalton, Kirkpatrick and Kerley will all play for the last time in their college careers.

    Dalton, the Rose Bowl Offensive Most Valuable Player, led the Frogs to winning seasons for the last four years. Dalton finished his collegiate career with a 42-7 record.

    According to an article on sportsillustrated.com, NFL Network draft analyst Mike Mayock projects that Dalton could be among one of the second round draft picks.

    Dalton finished the 2010 season with 209 pass completions for 2,857 total yards and only six interceptions. Dalton also was responsible for 33 total touchdowns for the Frogs this season.

    Kirkpatrick was the recipient of the 2010 Rimington Trophy as the nation’s top center, and named to six All-America teams. Kirkpatrick did not allow a single sack or commit any penalties for his entire senior season. He was also the only offensive player to be a finalist for the Rotary Lombardi Award.

    Kerley was ranked nationally in the top 20 in punt returns and kickoff returns. This season he had a total of 388 yards in punt returns. He also was named to Sports Illustrated’s All-America team as a punt returner and was one of three finalists for the Paul Hornung Award as the nation’s most versatile player. This season, he led the team with 56 receptions and 10 touchdown catches.

    Playing in the Senior Bowl has launched professional careers for many former TCU players.

    Former TCU running back LaDainian Tomlinson played in the 2001 Senior Bowl and was the 2001 Senior Bowl Overall Most Valuable Player. He was drafted in the 2001 NFL Draft by the San Diego Chargers. He now plays for the New York Jets.

    Former TCU linebacker Daryl Washington played in the 2010 Senior Bowl and was chosen in the second round of the 2010 NFL Draft by the Arizona Cardinals.

    Former TCU defensive end Jerry Hughes was selected to play in the 2010 Senior Bowl but was unable to play due to an injury. Hughes now plays for the Indianapolis Colts.

    2011 Under Armour Senior Bowl

    When: Saturday, Jan. 29

    Where: Ladd-Peebles Stadium in Mobile, Ala.

    When: 3 p.m. CST

    On TV: The NFL Network