Steele To Showcase Talent In Texas Vs. The Nation Game Saturday
Feb. 5, 2010
MEMPHIS, TENN. - Curtis Steele was elated to get a shot to perform in front of NFL scouts when he was invited last month to participate in the fourth annual Pro Football Hall of Fame Texas vs. The Nation Challenge. The game is set to kick off at 1 p.m. CST at Sun Bowl Stadium in El Paso, Texas on Saturday, Feb. 6. The event will be nationally televised on CBS College Sports Network.
Steele arrived in El Paso last Sunday and has had a packed schedule throughout the week that has included NFL testing, interviews with scouts, work outs and practices. Steele is playing for the Nation team that is coached by Florida Atlantic head coach Howard Schnellenberger. Other running backs selected to play for the Nation team are East Carolina's Dominique Lindsay, Kentucky's Alfonso Smith and Toney Baker from NC State.
Reached in El Paso Thursday, Steele spoke of his busy schedule and how he has received a lot of positive feedback.
"Things are going pretty well out here," said Steele. "There is a lot of competition going on, and it has pretty much been all business. There are some really good running backs out here and we have been going through high intensity practices and workouts."
"The best part about all of this is having the opportunity to perform in front of NFL scouts and interacting with a lot of guys from so many different schools," added Steele. "The toughest part has been all of the work we have been putting into this game, and by the end of the day, I am just ready to get in the bed and sleep. I haven't had much time to talk to family or anything because we have been going non-stop all day and into the evenings. It's all worth it, though, as I have heard a lot of great feedback from the scouts."
Texas vs. the Nation is a collegiate senior all-star game that pits top players with ties to the state of Texas against top seniors from across the nation. The all-star game attracts hundreds of NFL, CFL, and European league scouts each year and provides athletes with the opportunity to be seen by the pros one last time before the draft.
Steele joins an elite group of players who have made the rosters of this three-year-old all-star game. Since the inaugural game in 2007, a total of 292 participants have gone on to sign NFL contracts. Some of the outstanding past participants include Chicago Bears WR Johnny Knox, Indianapolis Colts WR Pierre Garcon, Denver Broncos DT Marcus Thomas, Cincinnati Bengals RB Bernard Scott, Jacksonville Jaguars DT Terrance Knighton, and Arizona Cardinals RB Tim Hightower.
Steele earned Conference USA first-team honors and received the Tigers' Offensive Player of the Year Award after totaling 1,239 yards and 15 touchdowns on 198 carries. He scored multiple touchdowns in the final four games of the season, including four in the overtime loss to Tulsa in the season finale. He registered six 100-yard rushing games again in 2009 to bring his career total to 12, which ranks second in school history behind DeAngelo Williams. Included in the six 100-yard games this past season were a 240-yard effort versus UTEP and a 232-yard performance against Tulsa. Steele finished his two-year career at Memphis ranked third all-time in rushing yards with 2,462 and fourth in rushing touchdowns with 22.