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Compiled by Steve Breazeale
College football championship weekend was an exciting one. For those paying close attention, you might have noticed several familiar names and faces on the sidelines.
Seven former San Clemente High School football players were part of teams that put together winning seasons and are now bound for a NCAA Division I Football Bowl Subdivision bowl game.
Here is a list of those players and their teams’ matchups, along with television viewing information (note: all times listed are Pacific Time).
Sam Darnold, Jake Russell and Jack Sears, USC: Darnold will quarterback the No. 8 Trojans against No. 5 Ohio State in the Cotton Bowl on Friday, Dec. 29 (5:30 p.m. on ESPN). Many thought the Buckeyes were worthy of consideration for the College Football Playoff. Darnold, Russell (a wide receiver), Sears (backup quarterback) and the Pac-12 champion Trojans are winners of their last five.
Riley Whimpey and Donté Harrington, Boise State: After losing to Fresno State one week prior, the Broncos came roaring back to defeat the Bulldogs 17-14 in the Mountain West Championship game on Dec. 2. Whimpey, a freshman linebacker who has played in 11 games this season; Harrington, a redshirt freshman offensive lineman; and Boise State draw Oregon in the Las Vegas Bowl on Saturday, Dec. 16 (12:30 p.m. on ABC).
Tucker Scott, Utah: Scott, a freshman offensive lineman, and the Utes will play the Big-12’s West Virginia in the Heart of Dallas Bowl on Tuesday, Dec. 26 (10:20 a.m. on ESPN). Utah secured bowl eligibility with a 34-13 win over Colorado in the final game of the regular season.
Zachary Cochrun, UCLA: Despite a coaching change that saw former head coach Jim Mora fired with one game left to play, Cochrun, a freshman offensive lineman, and the Bruins rallied to beat Cal 30-27 on Nov. 24 and become bowl-eligible. UCLA will play Kansas State in the Cactus Bowl on Tuesday, Dec. 26 (7 p.m. on ESPN).