PASADENA, Calif. -- Senior quarterback Nathan Rourke (Oakville, Ontario, Canada) has been selected to compete in the ninth annual NFLPA Collegiate Bowl, which will be held on Saturday (Jan. 18) at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, Calif. The game is scheduled to kickoff at 7 p.m. ET/4 p.m. PT and will be televised on NFL Network.
Founded in 2012, the NFLPA Collegiate Bowl gives prospective players the best opportunity to showcase their talents to potential employers and fans. Nearly 200 scouts, player personnel staff, general managers and head coaches from all 32 NFL teams are expected to be in attendance to watch live practices, conduct player interviews and review tape.
Rourke is set to suit up for the American Team, which is led by former Cleveland Browns and Oakland Raiders head coach Hue Jackson. The opposing team, the National Team, will be coached by former Cincinnati Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis.
Two Ohio student-athletes who once played on the offensive line in front of Rourke - left guard Joe Anderson and left tackle Joe Lowery - were invited to play in the NFLPA Collegiate Bowl last season.
Rourke, a physical activity and sport coaching major, was named to the 2019 All-Mid-American Conference First Team after being named to the All-MAC Second Team the previous two seasons. He was named MAC East Division Offensive Player of the Week three times during his senior season, bringing his career total to nine.
Rourke set career highs in completions (200; sixth-most in program history), attempts (328; eighth-most in program history), completion percentage (61.0 percent; sixth-best in program history), passing yards (2,820; fourth-most in program history) and passing yards per game (216.9; fifth-most in program history) while throwing for 20 touchdown passes (tied for fourth-most in program history) against a career-low five interceptions in 2019. His passing efficacy rating of 150.3 ranked as the second-best in the MAC and second-best in program history. The dual-threat quarterback also got it done with his legs, ranking second on the team with 867 rushing yards and leading the squad with 13 rushing touchdowns (tied for seventh-most in program history). He accounted for 3,687 yards of total offense (second-most in program history) and averaged 7.65 yards per play (second-most in program history) and a career-high 283.6 yards per game, which set a new program record. The second receiving touchdown of his career helped him account for 84 points and 34 touchdowns responsible for (fourth-most in program history). He finished the season ranked third among MAC quarterbacks in passing touchdowns, fourth in passing yards, fifth in completion percentage and sixth in completions while he ranked second among all MAC players in total offense and total offense yards per game and tied for fourth in touchdowns scored. He threw for over 300 yards twice and threw for multiple touchdowns seven times while rushing over 100 yards twice and rushing for multiple touchdowns three times. Rourke was named Most Valuable Player of the 23rd Famous Idaho Potato Bowl after rushing for 87 yards and a touchdown and throwing for 144 yards in his final collegiate game to lead the Bobcats to a 30-21 victory over Nevada on Jan. 3 at Albertsons Stadium in Boise, Idaho.
Rourke finished his career at Ohio with a record of 24-13 as starting quarterback and was under center for an unprecedented three-straight bowl victories. He ranks first in program history in career touchdowns scored (51), touchdowns responsible for (111), total offense yards gained (10,091), total offense yards per play (7.65), total offense yards per game (258.7), passing yards per attempt (8.3), passing yards per game (191.2) and passing efficiency (146.5); tied for first in rushing touchdowns (49); second in completions (525), attempts (894), passing yards (7,457) and passing touchdowns (60); third in points scored (306) and completion percentage (58.7 percent); fifth in passing yards per completion (14.2); eighth in rushing yards (2,634); and ninth in rushing yards per game (67.0). He owns program single-season records for points scored (132; 2017), touchdowns scored (22; 2017), touchdowns responsible for (39; 2017), total offense yards per play (8.07; 2018), total offense yards per game (283.6; 2018), most passing yards per attempt (tied; 8.9; 2018), high passing efficiency (156.3; 2018) and rushing touchdowns (21; 2017).
Rourke is a two-time winner of the Jon Cornish Trophy, which is awarded annually to the most outstanding Canadian player in NCAA Football. He was ranked third by the Canadian Football League (CFL) Scouting Bureau in its second edition of its top-20 eligible prospects list, which was released last month.
Rourke has also excelled in the classroom during his collegiate career. He has been named to the Academic All-MAC Team twice and has garnered Distinguished Scholar Athlete recognition twice in addition to being named MAC Male Scholar-Athlete of the Week twice. Rourke received the Humanitarian Award prior to the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl earlier this month.