The Detroit Lions coached the South to a 21-16 victory over the North in the 2013 Senior Bowl on Saturday. The South took an early 14-0 lead and never really looked back, adding a late touchdown to clinch the victory. This is Jim Schwartz's second win as a head coach in the Senior Bowl, as his team also won back in 2010.
The South got off to a fast start thanks to an 88-yard return by Robert Alford on the game's opening kickoff. The positive special teams play was probably a pleasant sight for Schwartz and the other Lions coaches, and it set up a 2-yard touchdown run by E.J. Manuel. Manuel got the South into the end zone on its next drive as well, scoring on a 20-yard pass to Michael Williams.
Things quieted down a bit after the first two scores, with no points being scored in the second quarter. The North made things a bit closer with a 20-yard touchdown run by Johnathan Franklin in the third quarter, and a field goal cut the lead to 4 points. A Mike James touchdown run from 4 yards out in the fourth quarter gave the South a nice cushion, and they went on to win by a score of 21-16.
For me, the MVP of this game was BYU defensive end Ezekiel Ansah. He was dominant for Schwartz's South team and showed a lot of athleticism. Coming into this game, Ansah had been predicted by most to be picked somewhere in the teens of the first round, but his performance could help elevate his stock into the top 10. I don't know if he'll be in the conversation for the Lions' No. 5 pick, but he's definitely a player to watch going forward.