Davis, Collaros still quarterbacking

With two weeks to go in the Lone Star Football League’s regular season, former Bellaire High and Ball State University quarterback Nate Davis can clinch his third regular-season championship in as many seasons.

Davis led Amarillo to the LSFL regular-season and playoff titles the past two seasons. With a victory tonight at home over, ironically, Amarillo, Davis and his Rio Grande Valley teammates will have clinched the regular-season crown.

The Sol (7-3) hold a slim -game lead over San Angelo (7-4), whom they lost to last week in a shootout, 74-71. However, Rio Grande Valley has a game in-hand on the Bandits as they travel to New Mexico for the regular-season finale on June 21. San Angelo plays at Amarillo that night after being idle this week.

In eight games that have been reported (two haven’t), Davis is 142 of 252 for 2,049 yards. He has tossed 45 TD passes and 10 interceptions. He also ranks in the LSFL is rushing yards per game with an average of 14.8. He has carried the ball 37 times for 118 yards and 13 six-pointers, which also lead the league.

His 2,167 total yards ranks second, as does his 270.9 yards per game.

In last week’s shootout loss to San Angelo, Davis accounted for seven touchdowns, four through the air and three on the ground. He was 17-for-31 for 231 yards, but was picked off four times including the last three Sol possessions. The last INT came on the final play of the game as Rio Grande Valley was outscored 20-0 in the fourth quarter.

Davis threw three of his TD passes in the first quarter when both teams tallied 35 points. His final TD pass gave RGV a 71-54 lead after three quarters.

Davis isn’t the only former Ohio Valley standout quarterback that is still competing.

Former Steubenville Big Red and University of Cincinnati standout Zach Collaros is set to lead the Hamilton Tiger-Cats as the 2014 Canadian Football League begins its exhibition season.

The Tiger-Cats, who lost to Saskatchewan, 45-23, in the 101st Grey Cup last season, host the Montreal Alouettes today at 3 p.m. inside Ron Joyce Stadium in Hamilton.

He is listed in front of some pretty familiar names, including former Central Michigan standout Dan LeFevour; Jeremiah Masoli who concluded his career at Ole Miss after three seasons with the Oregon Ducks and a Rose Bowl appearance; Stephen McGee from Texas A&M who played parts of four seasons with the Dallas Cowboys; and Corey Roberson from Troy University who attended the Browns’ 2014 rookie camp.

The 6-foot, 216-pound Collaros signed with Hamilton as a free agent on Jan. 30 after appearing in all 18 regular-season games for Toronto last season, starting in eight, in his second year with the Argonauts

He completed 190 of 287 passing attempts (66.2%) for 2, 316 yards and 14 touchdowns, while rushing 59 times for 236 yards and five more TDs. He had a season-high 336 yards on 30 of 43 passing at Montreal on Sept. 8, and was named CFL Offensive Player of the Week after completing 25 of 36 passes for 330 yards and four touchdowns at Calgary in Week 13 to set his single-game high. He was also named CFL Offensive Player of the Month for September.

After graduating from UC, Collaros was signed as an undrafted free agent by the NFL’s Tampa Bay Buccaneers on April 30. However, he was released by the team on May 7 following mini-camp and signed as a free agent with Toronto on June 5.

Played 39 games in five seasons (2007-11) at Cincinnati, completing 485 of 783 passing attempts for 6,272 yards and 51 touchdowns while rushing 268 times for 1,240 yards and 16 touchdowns with the Bearcats.

At Big Red, he compiled a 41-1 record in three years as the start starting quarterback and broke every Big Red passing record on his way to a 30-0 mark and back-to-back state titles in his final two years.

When Collaros looks across the field, the starting quarterback for Montreal will be none other than Troy Smith, the former Heisman Trophy winner from The Ohio State University.

Joining Smith will be former Buckeye wide receiver Duron Carter; Glenville State defensive back Jerald Brown; former Ohio U. linebacker Chip Cox, a Columbus native; former UC wide receiver/kick returner Mardy Gilyard; Northwestern running back Tyrell Sutton from Akron Buchtel; Jamaan Webb, a former DB at Bethany College; and former Cincinnati Bengals wideout Chad Johnson.

The Alouettes are coached by former Butler (Pa.) and University of Maryland quarterback Scott Milanovich.

North can be reached at knorth@timesleaderonline.com