SAN ANTONIO - It didn't take very long for Jeannette (Pa.) dual-threat quarterback Terrelle Pryor to prove why he is the nation's No. 1 ranked player in Saturday's U.S. Army All-American Bowl.
In front of a U.S. Army Bowl record crowd of 36,534 in the San Antonio Alamodome, Pryor put on a one-man show leading the East to a convincing 33-23 victory over the West.
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Pryor was a unanimous choice for the game's most valuable player, with a game-high 79 yards rushing on 10 carries, to go along with 76 yards passing, giving him a total of a 155 yards of offense with two touchdowns.
"I was just out there having fun today," Pryor said. "It's not even about proving I'm the No. 1 ranked player in the nation. I'm just out here playing. I just want to get ready for college and have fun. I had fun all week and I'm not really worried about that ranking stuff."
Pryor's 79 rushing yards rank third all-time in the eight-year history of the U.S. Army All-American Bowl. Pryor passed both USC's Reggie Bush and Ohio State's Chris Wells, but he still ranks behind North Carolina State's Darrell Blackman (81 yards) and Oklahoma's Adrian Peterson (91 yards).
In all, Pryor led the East to scoring drives on his first three series of the game. On the East's opening possession in the first quarter, Pryor drove the offense down 92 yards on seven plays. Pryor set the tone right away on that drive by rushing for a 22-yard gain on the East's opening play from scrimmage.
The 92-yard drive was highlighted by 46-yard pass from Pryor to Manassas (Va.) Stonewall Jackson running back Ryan Williams. On the next play Pryor capped off the drive with a 6-yard touchdown run to put the East up 7-0.
Pryor's best moment on Saturday may have came in the final minute of the third quarter when he led the East on a nine-play, 78-yard scoring drive.
With the West team closing the gap to 20-17, Pryor found Fort Wayne (Ind.) Bishop Dwegner wide receiver John Goodman for a 25-yard touchdown. Pryor faked a run to the right side of the field and found Goodman wide open on the left side.
"He was just sensational," East head coach Robert Prunty said of Pryor. "He's a difference maker and I've never seen talent like that before. Terrelle Pryor is Terrelle Pryor. People compare him to Vince Young, and Vince Young is a great player, but people are going to be talking about Terrelle Pryor for a long time.
"Terrelle Pryor has the speed of a defensive back and plays like at wide receiver at 6-foot-6. He's got the height of a lineman, the speed of a defensive back and the skill level of a receiver."
Denver (Colo.) Mullen and Texas longhorn commit Nolan Brewster was one of the guys trying to tackle Pryor for the West.
Growing up in Austin as a kid, Brewster was around Young during his time with the Longhorns. In fact, Brewster's father, Minnesota head coach Tim Brewster, recruited Young for Mack Brown at Texas. When people say Pryor could be the next version of Vince Young, Nolan Brewster said it's definitely a possibility.
"With his size and speed, I've never seen anything like him before," Brewster said. "He was just unbelievable.
"I see the Vince comparisons. They both can throw the ball, but what sets them apart from everybody else is their running ability. I would definitely compare him to Vince."
Pryor still remains wide open with his recruitment and continues to consider Ohio State, Michigan, Florida and Oregon.
The biggest standout for the West squad on Saturday was St. Paul (Minn.) Cretin-Derham Hall wide receiver Michael Floyd, who finished with game highs in receiving yards (118), receptions (four) and touchdowns (two).
Wichita (Kan.) East linebacker Arthur Brown was arguably the game's most outstanding defensive player with six tackles, including four solo stops. Safeties Rahim Moore and Brewster led the way for the West with six tackles each. Brewster also had the game's only interception.
Saturday's 33-23 victory by the East evens up the all-time series at 4-4. The West won last years' Army Bowl 24-7.