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3 MAC Players in the 2016 Shrine Game

Two Minutemen and one Falcon will be proving their worth in front of NFL scouts in St. Petersburg, Florida, on January 23.

Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports

The East-West Shrine Game is the oldest college all-star football game, starting in 1925. Since then, this game has given college football players a stage to showcase their talents in front of vigilant pro scouts and a national TV audience. The Shrine Game allows its participants to increase their draft stock throughout a week of practice, culminating in the actual game at the end of the week.

Three players from the Mid-American Conference have accepted invitations to this all-star game at 4 p.m. on Saturday, January 23, broadcasted on NFL Network.

Blake Frohnapfel

QB - UMass

  • (2015) Hustle Belt's preseason No. 8 player in the MAC
  • (2014) First Team All-MAC

His career is one of two strong contrasts. As a graduate student at UMass, Frohnapfel only had two years of eligibility for the Minutemen, as he earned his undergraduate degree from Marshall University. His first year for UMass was incredibly promising, averaging 334.5 yards per game and tossing 23 touchdown passes. However, this past season he struggled, throwing for under 3,000 yards, with only 16 TD's compared to 13 INT's.

Alex Huettel


  • (2015) Second Team All-MAC
  • (2015) Hustle Belt's preseason No. 25 player in the MAC
  • (2014) Second Team All-MAC
  • (2014) Hustle Belt's preseason No. 17 player in the MAC
  • (2013) Second Team All-MAC

Consistency. That is the perfect way to describe this mauling offensive lineman. After his redshirt season in 2011, Huettel has started every game for the Falcons since. He has performed well, earning second team All-MAC honors in his last three seasons.

Tajae Sharpe

WR - UMass

  • (2015) First Team All-MAC
  • (2015) Hustle Belt's preseason No. 5 player in the MAC
  • (2014) First Team All-MAC

As fellow Shrine Game invitee Blake Frohnapfel's number one target, Tajae Sharpe received plenty of attention over the past two seasons, where he caught for over 1000 yards each season. After finishing ninth in the nation in receiving yards in 2014, Sharpe followed that performance by finishing twelfth in the nation in 2015. Also, this season he gathered 111 receptions, good enough for best in the country (three receptions ahead of fellow MAC receiver, Daniel Braverman of WMU).