MOBILE, Ala.- University of New Hampshire senior defensive tackle Jared Smith (Greencastle, Pa.) was selected Thursday to the inaugural Watch List for the 2013 Senior Bowl, the nation's premier college football all-star game, scheduled for Saturday, January 26, in Mobile's Ladd-Peebles Stadium.
Smith is one of only 29 players from non-FBS schools, including four from the Colonial Athletic Association (CAA), on the Watch List. The Southeastern Conference (SEC), winners of the last six BCS National Championships, leads all conferences with 71 players on the list of 309 seniors and top NFL prospects.
The 6-foot-3, 292-pound interior lineman is slated to start at defensive tackle when the No. 14/12 Wildcats open their season at Holy Cross on Thursday, August 30 (7:30 p.m.). Smith, who garnered Phil Steele's Preseason All-CAA Honorable Mention as the publication's 23rd-ranked DT nationally in FCS football, started all 12 games last season. His 43 tackles ranked second among UNH's defensive linemen; he posted 21 solo stops, 5.5 tackles for loss, 2.5 sacks and a blocked kick. His 8.5 career sacks rank first among all current 'Cats, and he enters the season with 89 career stops.
"The Senior Bowl is very pleased to announce our first-ever official Watch List," Senior Bowl executive director Phil Savage said. "We want both college and pro football fans to enjoy tracking the players on our list as they begin their journey towards the Senior Bowl and the 2013 NFL Draft. We have included prospects from almost every level of the college game and look forward to monitoring their progress throughout the upcoming season."
The top 100 seniors in the country will be invited to participate in the all-star game. Appearing on the Watch List is not a requirement for a player to earn an invitation to the Senior Bowl.
The Senior Bowl is college football's premier senior showcase event, annually featuring the nation's best senior collegiate football stars and top NFL draft prospects on teams coached by NFL coaching staffs. Senior Bowl practices and game-week festivities are attended by more than 800 general managers, head coaches, assistant coaches, scouts and other front office personnel from all 32 National Football League teams, making Mobile and the Senior Bowl the week-long host to a one-of-a-kind NFL Coaches Convention. For more information on the 2013 Senior Bowl, please visit the bowl's website at www.seniorbowl.com.
No. 14/12 UNH tangles with Holy Cross at Fitton Field in Worcester, Mass., on Thursday, Aug. 30, at 7:30 p.m. The Wildcats' home opener is scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 15, at 12 p.m. against Central Connecticut State. For tickets, visit www.unhwildcats.com or call (603) 862-4000, extension 5.