Calling it "a great honor," Arizona Wildcats quarterback Nick Foles announced Thursday that he will compete in the Senior Bowl.

Foles is one of three quarterbacks scheduled to play for the South team in the game, held Jan. 28 in Mobile, Ala.  Oklahoma State's Brandon Weeden and San Diego State's Ryan Lindley are the others.

Simply being selected is an honor for both Foles and the UA, traditionally a quarterback-poor program. The last Wildcats quarterback to compete in the Senior Bowl was Eddie Wilson, who did it in 1962. Arizona hasn't placed a quarterback in an all-star showcase since 2003, when Jason Johnson played in the East-West Shrine Game. The last UA quarterback to take a snap in an NFL game was Bill Demory, who started three games for the New York Jets in 1973. 

Foles threw for a program-record 4,334 yards and 28 touchdowns as a senior this fall, and was named honorable mention All Pac-12. No UA quarterback has ever thrown for more yards, attempted more passes, completed more passes or been responsible for more yards of total offense.

Foles called the all-star game selection "really exciting."

"It's a different game now," he said. "It's not college football and it's not high school so I'm just going to go out there and get a taste of what the NFL is going to be like - that's what I'm looking forward to."

Foles will face tough competition on the South squad.

Weeden led Oklahoma State to a 12-1 record and Fiesta Bowl victory over powerhouse Stanford as a senior. A former minor-league baseball player, Weeden set Oklahoma State's single-season record for passing yards, total offense, attempts, completions and touchdown passes.

Lindley is SDSU's all-time leader in passing yards, touchdowns, total offense, completions and starts, and is also the Mountain West Conference's all-time leading passer. Lindley led the Aztecs to back-to-back bowl appearances as an upperclassman.

Blessed with big frames and strong arms, all three quarterbacks project as NFL draft picks.

"I think we've identified three solid quarterback prospects in Brandon Weeden, Nick Foles and Ryan Lindley," Senior Bowl President and CEO Steve Hale said. "All three guys are 6-4 and above and all possess tremendous arm strength and the leadership abilities that NFL clubs are looking for. We're excited about bringing them here to the Senior Bowl to compete at the highest level."


The sports editor of the Arizona Daily Star.