The Louisiana Tech running back scored on a 9-yard run with 47 seconds remaining and earned the offensive MVP award for lifting the West to a 24-17 victory.
“It was a great honor, but I’ve got to give it to the offensive line. I was just hoping to get out there and show what I can do,” said Creer, who rushed for 80 yards on 15 carries. “I learned a lot this week and I was glad to bring some of it to the field. The main thing was being patient, working to find the holes. It was all a great experience,” Creer said.
Quarterbacks Chandler Harnish of Northern Illinois and Tyler Hansen of Colorado had short TD runs for the West, which rallied from an early 10-0 deficit at Tropicana Field.
Missouri Western State’s Greg Zuerlein kicked a 35-yard field goal that made it 17-17 early in the fourth quarter, setting the stage for Hansen to lead the winning drive in the closing minutes.
“There’s no overtime. There was some urgency. You have to do something. I don’t know what it is, but you have to do something,” said Hansen.
Former Griffin High standout running back Bobby Rainey, a recent graduate of Western Kentucky University, carried the ball 6 times for 33 yards, caught 4 passes for 23 yards and played on all the special teams units for the West.
“It was a different experience playing on special teams. I had a good time,” Rainey said. “I learned a lot from the scouts who were there during the week and I enjoyed interacting with the other players.”
Michigan State’s B.J. Cunningham and Miami’s LaRon Byrd caught touchdown passes for the East, which also got an early field goal from Georgia’s Blair Walsh.
Penn State safety Nick Sukay had a fourth-quarter interception for the East and was the game’s defensive MVP.
Tennessee-Chattanooga’s B.J. Coleman teamed with Tennessee Tech’s Tim Benford on a 28-yard pass play to set up Walsh’s field goal on East’s opening possession of the game. His 21-yard completion to Cunningham, who broke a tackle and continued into the end zone, made it 10-0.
Coleman started for the East and was followed by Southern Mississippi’s Austin Davis and Florida’s John Brantley. Harnish started for the West and scored on a 1-yard run that finished a 19-play, 80-yard drive. Less than five minutes later Hansen ran 3 yards for a short-lived 14-10 advantage.
Davis tossed a 3-yard TD pass to Byrd to put the East ahead 17-14 at the half.
While most of the players who will be selected early in the NFL draft will be in Mobile, Ala., for next week’s Senior Bowl, the prospects in the East-West game were hoping to impress and enhance their chances of being selected in the later rounds and winding up in NFL training camps as undrafted free agents.
“The players had a lot of meetings with NFL scouts during the week of the game and it was exciting,” Rainey said. “The scouts got to know me off the field and several of them told me that I had a chance to play at the next level.”