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2002 AFCA Aztec Bowl

| 2002 Aztec Bowl Game Information | 2002 Aztec Bowl Website | 2002 Aztec Bowl Web Broadcast |

Derek Flann Selected to Play in the 2002 Aztec Bowl.
Derek Flann
Lake Lillian, Minn.
Was selected to play in the 2002 Aztec Bowl.

The American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) announced today that Concordia senior defensive lineman Derek Flann (Sr., Lake Lillian, Minn.) has been named to the 2002 AFCA Aztec Bowl team. Flann will play with the AFCA Division III all-star team that will represent the United States against the Mexican National team in the 2002 Aztec Bowl on December 14th in Torreon, Mexico.

Flann is one of 42 NCAA Division III seniors from around the country who will make up this year's team. Former Central (Iowa) College head coach Ron Schipper will coach the team for the sixth consecutive year. Longtime Concordia head coach Jim Christopherson will be one of five assistant coaches for the United States team.

He is one of only three players chosen from the MIAC. The other two players are outside linebacker Jon Foss from Bethel and defensive lineman Sean O'Leary from St. Thomas

Flann becomes the fourth player in school history to compete in the prestigious all-star event. Defensive standout Mark Hankel played in the 2000 Aztec Bowl, Jake Estenson participated in 1999 and Tory Langemo played in the inaugural AFCA Aztec Bowl back in 1997.

Flann was recently named to the MIAC All-Conference Team as a defensive lineman. He also received the Stam Award, given annually to the league's most outstanding offensive or defensive lineman.

For the season, Flann had 37 tackles (22 solo/15 assisted), 16 tackles for loss and 2.5 sacks. For his four-year career, he had 147 tackles, 35 tackles for loss and 14.5 sacks.

2002 Aztec Bowl Game Information

Date: Saturday, December 14, 2002
Kickoff: 7 p.m. CST
Site: Torreon, Mexico
Television: None in the U.S.
Internet Broadcast: Courtesy of TSRN Sports
Internet: Results will be available on the AFCA’s website at www.afca.com.

The Series: Sixth USA National Team-Mexico National Team meeting. U.S. leads 5-0. Prior to 1997, Mexico had a record of 11-14-1 in 26 Aztec Bowls dating back to 1947. Opponents in those games were a mixture of junior colleges, NCAA and NAIA schools, military and international teams.

Last Year: The USA National Team defeated Mexico, 37-5, in last year’s game in Saltillo. The U.S. also defeated Mexico, 42-41, in 1997 in Toluca, Mexico; 40-13 in 1998 in Monterrey; 44-13 in 1999 in Mexico City and 27-26 in 2000 in Merida.

Stepping Stone
In just five years, the Aztec Bowl has become a showcase for Division III players looking to earn a spot on an NFL roster.

Former John Carroll linebacker London Fletcher, who played in the 1997 Aztec Bowl, is a starting linebacker for the Buffalo Bills and was a member of the St. Louis Rams’ Super Bowl-winning team.

Wisconsin-Stevens Point linebacker Clint Kriewaldt, a 1998 Aztec Bowl participant, was a fifth-round pick of the Detroit Lions in the 1999 NFL draft.

Several other players over the years have signed free agent contracts with NFL clubs while others have gone on to play in NFL Europe, the Canadian Football League and the Arena Football League.

Four members of the 2001 team — Kirk Rogers of Hardin-Simmons, Jason Johnson of Brockport State, Jim Jones of Widener and Jerimiah Janssen of St. Norbert signed free agent contracts this year.

Player Selection
The 42-man USA roster is made up each year of seniors from Division III schools around the country. Seniors named to the AFCA Division III Coaches’ All-America Team receive invitations first and the remainder of the roster is filled in based on recommendations from Division III head coaches around the country. To make the team as representative as possible, no more than one player is chosen from any school.

Event Background
The Aztec Bowl is the traditional season-ending game for Mexico’s college football season. The game has been played 30 times since 1947 with the last four contests featuring the United States-Mexico match-up. Mexico faced a mixture of NCAA and NAIA colleges, junior colleges, armed forces teams and international teams in the 26 Aztec Bowls prior to 1997.

AFCA Involvement
The Aztec Bowl is part of the AFCA’s involvement with Football Federation USA. FFUSA was organized in 1998 for the purpose of uniting the amateur football athletes around the world through education, special events and travel.

Links to Aztec Bowl History:
- 2001 Aztec Bowl: USA 37, Mexico 5
- 2000 Aztec Bowl: USA 27, Mexico 26
- 1999 Aztec Bowl: USA 44, Mexico 13
- 1998 Aztec Bowl: USA 40, Mexico 13
- 1997 Aztec Bowl: USA 42, Mexico 41
- Past USA Aztec Bowl Players: 1997-2001
- Aztec Bowl Records: 1997-2001

For more on the game go to : www.afca.com

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