Loyola grads are college football playoff and bowl bound

The starting center for the Pac-12 champion Washington Huskies (12-1), former Loyola All-Serra League offensive lineman COLEMAN SHELTON ’13, was recently named to the second team 2016 All-Pac-12 football honor squad.  Shelton will be the first former Cub to start for a team in the College Football Playoffs since the new four-team national championship playoff format was inaugurated in 2014.  Joining the All-Pac 12 pivot man as a Husky contributor in Washington’s battle with top seed Alabama in the Peach Bowl on New Year’s Eve will be 2015 Loyola team MVP and All-State DB MYLES BRYANT ’16, who is starting on two of the Huskies’ special team units and also seeing extensive playing time in Washington’s secondary as a true freshman.  Former Loyola All-Serra League two-way line standout JOHN TURNER ’14 is a back-up offensive lineman for the Huskies.

The surging USC Trojans (9-3) will host Big Ten champion Penn State in the Rose Bowl on January 2.  Former Loyola MVP and All-CIF offensive lineman CHRIS BROWN ’14 has seen a great deal of time up front at offensive guard for the Trojans this fall.  All-Mission League defensive end CHRISTIAN RECTOR ’15 played in 11 games for USC during the course of the regular season.  All-Serra League linebacker REUBEN PETERS is a scholarship fullback for the Trojans.

Stanford kicker CONRAD UKROPINA ’12 will complete his playing career for the Stanford Cardinal (9-3) in the Sun Bowl on December 30 as the team from The Farm tangles with North Carolina.  Ukropina had another outstanding campaign as Stanford’s kicker.  This season the All-Pac-12 honorable mention and All-Pac-12 All-Academic honorable mention performer was a perfect 33 of 33 on extra point attempts and 18 of 22 on field goal tries, including two of two on attempts over 50 yards.

DAVID LONG ’16, a high school All-American, All-State first team and All-CIF Pac-5 Division defensive back for the Cubs’ state-ranked team in 2015, is a scholarship DB for the Wolverines of the University of Michigan (10-2), which plays Florida State on December 30 in the Orange Bowl in Miami.

CHAZ ANDERSON ’12, the fourth leading receiver (27 receptions for 356 yards) for Boise State (10-2) this fall, will play one more game for the Broncos as they will take on the Baylor Bears in the Cactus Bowl in Arizona on December 27.  Anderson was a two way All-Serra League standout for the Cubs at wide receiver and corner.

All-CIF tailback NICO EVANS ‘14 is a scholarship running back for Wyoming (8-5), while his teammate ADAM PILAPIL ’14, an All-Serra League safety for the Cubs, is a Cowboy linebacker.  Wyoming is slated to take on BYU in the Poinsettia Bowl in San Diego on December 21.

Cal Poly San Luis Obispo (7-5) was beaten by the University of San Diego (9-2) in the first round of the Football Championship Subdivision playoffs two weeks ago, and there were a total of four former Loyola players on the field.  Cal Poly running back DAVID COOPER ‘15 was the Cub MVP in 2014, while defensive back MEKAI SHEFFIE ’14 tallied 24 tackles, including 19 solos in 11 games for the Mustangs this season.  Meanwhile, for the University of San Diego, which downed Cal Poly, 35-21, in the playoff tilt, two true freshmen from Loyola had banner seasons for the Tereros.  Twins DANIEL and DAVID TOLBERT ’16 played in seven and 10 games, respectively, as corners.  David broke up three passes and defended two while Daniel broke up two passes and defended two for USD, which fell to top seed North Dakota State in a second round game on December 3.

All-Mission League lineman NOAH UTLEY ’16 was a standout on Loyola’s 9-3 squad in 2015 that finished the campaign ranked 17th in the state.  He is a member of the United States Military Academy (Army) squad (6-5) which will lock horns with North Texas in the Heart of Dallas Bowl on December 27.