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Star watch: College football bowl games feature Eastlake Titan grads Phillip Brents | Fri, Dec 23 2011 12:08 PM

For those who pay attention, the eastern end of the home sideline at Eastlake High School’s football stadium has been a gathering spot for Titan alumni in recent seasons. And it’s become crowded.

That’s a good thing for all the EHS student-athletes who have gone on to play college football.

Two former Titans will grace  national TV in bowl games on Dec. 30. Henry Simon and Iowa State (6-6) will battle Rutgers (8-4) in the Pinstripe Bowl from Yankee Stadium at 12:30 p.m. PST while Tony Jefferson and No. 14 Oklahoma (9-3) will tackle Iowa (7-5) at 7 p.m. PST in the Insight Bowl from Tempe, Ariz. Both games are on ESPN.

Jefferson, a freshman All-American last year, has continued his stellar play as a sophomore linebacker/defensive back.

Closer to home, linebacker Andrew Feaster’s SDSU Aztecs played in last Saturday’s R+L Carrier New Orleans Bowl while D’Angelo Barksdale saw his USD Toreros claim this year’s Pioneer League championship, and Jeremiah Andujo and Marcus Mendillo both took part in the NAIA championship playoffs for Azusa Pacific.

SDSU, playing in its second consecutive bowl game, dropped a 32-30 heartbreaker on a 50-yard field goal by Louisiana-Lafayette’s Brett Baer as time expired. The Aztecs (8-5) had gone ahead, 30-29, with 35 seconds to play in the game on quarterback Ryan Lindley’s third touchdown pass of the game.

Feaster appeared in five games during the 2011 season, credited with one tackle.

Andujo and Mendillo fell three points shy of playing in the NAIA national championship game. Asuza Pacific finished as the nation’s top independent NAIA member and is now officially in NCAA Division II.

Andujo started as a receiver/punt returner the past three seasons and scored six touchdowns in the last seven games.

USD finished 9-2, 7-1 in league, this past season. Barksdale had been starting at wide receiver until sidelined by injury.

Both Feaster and Mendillo were solid special teams contributors.

Dennis Clay and Nikko Barnes helped Cal Lutheran go undefeated in SCIAC (Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference) play to claim the league championship. However, Cal Lutheran lost in the first round of the Division III playoffs.

Clay has started the past three years at cornerback.

Marcus Perry (long snapper, Oregon State) and Jordan Koopman (slot receiver, Butler) are currently training for NFL Pro Day tryouts.

Perry has been the starting long snapper for four years while Koopman led Butler in receiving yards this season.

Other ex-Titans suiting up at the collegiate level this season included Jose Baez (West Liberty University), Will Duka (Humboldt State), Ruben Cardenas (University of Saint Mary), Owen Breeden (University of Saint Mary), Chester Radoc (University of Saint Mary), Blake Zamora (Asuza Pacific), Jordan Hines (Cal Poly San Luis Obispo), Chris Fletcher (Cal Poly San Luis Obispo), Lakeem Lewis (Grossmont College), Patrick Jarin (Southwestern College), Gabe Gomez (Southwestern College), Robin Johnson (Southwestern College) and Curtis Casey (Southwestern College).

Lewis and Jarin are now considering offers from four-year colleges.

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