SHREVEPORT, La. (Ark-La-Tex Weekend) - The Radiance Technologies Independence Bowl has long and rich tradition. Many who have participated in the college bowl game here in Shreveport have gone on to play in the National Football League. Only a handful though have made it to the Super Bowl. According to Director of Communication Erik Evenson, about 120 players from 43 colleges and universities have participated in both games.
Here are a few fun facts about how the Independence Bowl has played a part in Super Bowl history...
1. Players from 43 schools have competed in both games. The school with the most Super Bowl/Independence Bowl players is Texas A&M with eight players followed by the University of Virginia and Louisiana Tech University (with six each).
2. For Super Bowl LVII in 2023, two players on the Philadelphia Eagles, Milton Williams (Louisiana Tech, 2019) and Quez Watkins (Southern Miss, 2017) played in the Independence Bowl. The Kansas City Chiefs have five former Independence Bowl players: Derrick Nnadi (Florida State, 2017), L’Jarius Sneed (Louisiana Tech, 2019), Chris Lammons (South Carolina, 2014), Deon Bush (Miami, 2014) and Noah Gray (Duke, 2018).
3. The first Super Bowl player who played in the Independence Bowl was Larry Anderson. He played Kick Return for Louisiana Tech (1977) and the Pittsburgh Steelers (1979).
4. Three former Independence Bowl players have also completed in four Super Bowls! Bruce Smith (Virginia Tech-1993 and Buffalo Bills), Kevin Faulk (LSU-1995 & 1997 and New England Patriots) and Nate Solder (Colorado-2007 and New England Patriots).
5. Kansas City Chiefs Head Coach Andy Reid was the Offensive Line Coach for the University of Texas El Paso team in 1988. Former Dallas Cowboys Head Coach Jimmy Johnson was on the sidelines in Shreveport in 1981 with Oklahoma State.
6. The NFL team that has had the most Independence Bowl players to play in the Super Bowl: New England Patriots with 12.
7. Recognize these names? They played in the Independence Bowl: Alan Faneca (LSU, 1995 & 1997), Art Monk (Syracuse, 1979), Brett Favre (Southern Miss, 1988), Eli Manning (Ole Miss, 2002), Kevin Faulk (LSU, 1995 & 1997), Tiki Barber (Virginia, 1994) and Von Miller (Texas A&M, 2009).
So when the Radiance Technologies Independence Bowl rolls around in December, go watch it live. You might see the next generation of Super Bowl greats!
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