Football tradition oozes and ASU players get to soak it up

John Elway, Tom Brady, Brett Favre… not bad company.  For a quartet of ASU football players, that’s pretty heady stuff.

These NFL greats are among 62 Pro Football Hall of Famers who have played in the prestigious East-West Shrine Football Game, the longest-running college all-star fooltball game in the country.  And this year, ASU will be well represented at the event.

Running back Dimitri Nance is the latest to join teammates Shawn Lauvao, Dexter Davis, and Chris McGaha in accepting invitations to the Jan. 23 game.  Davis and McGaha are local products.  Davis, a 255 lb. defensive end, graduated from Thunderbird HS and McGaha, a 6’1″ wide receiver, attended Moon Valley HS.

Each brings a list of impressive credentials to the 85th edition of the Shrine game.  Nance was the Sun Devils’ leading rusher the past three years, picking up 795 yards and six TDs this season.  He compiled 1,000 yards of offensive, adding 216 yards on 28 pass completions.

McGaha led the team in pass receptions this season with 48 catches for 596 yards; he currently ranks fourth in school history with 160 career receptions and passed the 2,000-yard mark.  Davis started all 47 games during his four seasons at ASU, giving him the most starts by an ASU player since 1984; he had 16 tackles and 2.5 sacks this season.

Lauvao is a 6’3″ offensive lineman who has played both guard and tackle over the years and this year was a team captain with Davis and Mike Nixon.  He had 33 consecutive starts during his career and this year was named to the All Pac-10 Second Team.