MOBILE, Ala. — Duke’s Daniel Jones threw a touchdown pass and ran for another score in the third quarter to lead the North to a 34-24 victory over the South on Saturday in the Senior Bowl.
Projected as a likely first-round pick, Jones capped the weeklong audition for NFL teams with an efficient 8-of-11, 115-yard passing performance. Then, North Carolina State’s Ryan Finley took over in the fourth quarter with similar results.
Jones, one of 11 junior graduates in the game, and Finley ignited a North team that trailed 12-3 at halftime only to score on its first five drives of the second half.
After Texas defensive end Charles Omenihu stripped the ball from Auburn quarterback Jarrett Stidham, Jones delivered a quick score to take a 17-12 lead. He completed a 25-yarder to Ohio State’s Terry McLaurin on a flea flicker. Then UMass receiver Andy Isabella, a Biletnikoff Award finalist, scored on a 19-yard catch after breaking a tackle on his way to the end zone.
Finley then delivered a 23-yarder down the right sideline to Isabella on fourth and 2 on the way to another North touchdown. McLaurin ran 23 yards on an end around to set up a 4-yard touchdown run by Notre Dame’s Dexter Williams.
Memphis’ Tony Pollard, whose biggest claim to fame was as a kick returner, finished off the North scoring with a 21-yard touchdown run. Pollard tied the NCAA record for most career kickoff return touchdowns with his seventh against Wake Forest at the Birmingham Bowl.
The quarterbacks werenât quite as heralded as last year’s group that included Baker Mayfield (No. 1 overall) and Josh Allen (No. 7). But Missouri’s Drew Lock and Jones are two of the top quarterback prospects in the draft, a group that also includes underclassmen Dwayne Haskins of Ohio State and Oklahoma Heisman Trophy winner Kyler Murray.
Buffalo’s Tyree Jackson delivered two touchdown passes in the fourth quarter for the South. The 6-foot-7, 245-pounder was 13-of-21 passing for 165 yards but was also intercepted by Delaware’s Nasir Adderley, one of the top small college prospects in the game. Adderley is trying to follow in the steps of a famous relative, Pro Football Hall of Famer Herb Adderley.
Jon Gruden and the Oakland Raiders staff coached the North team while Kyle Shanahan and the San Francisco 49ers led the South. The 49ers have the second overall pick in the April draft and the Raiderspick fourth, 24th and 27th after trading Khalil Mack and Amari Cooper.