UTAH UTES

Former Utah Defensive End Heading To East-West Shrine Bowl

Jan 24, 2024, 4:14 PM

SALT LAKE CITY – Former Utah defensive end Jonah Elliss is officially set to compete in the East-West Shrine Bowl as part of his preparation for the 2024 NFL Draft.

Elliss is now the fourth Ute set to participate in a post-season NFL evaluation game, though the other three (offensive lineman Sataoa Laumea, and safeties Sione Vaki and Cole Bishop) will be participating in the Reese’s Senior Bowl.

The East-West Shrine Bowl will take place next week on Thursday, February 1 at 6:00 pm MT and can be viewed on NFL Network. The Reese’s Senior Bowl will take place three days later on Saturday, February 3 at 11:00 am MT, also on NFL Network.

Utah’s Consensus All-American Heads To The NFL

The legacy athlete (son of Utah great, Luther Elliss) played in 35 career games for the Utes with 18 starts. Originally penciled in as a linebacker, Elliss switched to defensive end for the 2022 season and hasn’t looked back.

Unfortunately, an injury cut Elliss’ 2023 campaign short, but not before cementing himself as one of the best defensive ends in the country.

 

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A post shared by Jonah Elliss (@jonah.elliss)

Elliss sits on 12 sacks for his 2023 season and ranks first in FBS in sacks per game (1.20) in his 10 total games played. Elliss also racked up 16 tackles for loss and ranks fourth in FBS in TFL per game at (1.6).

The reigning “Mayor of Sack Lake City” has the highest sack total for the Utes since 2019 when former defensive end Bradlee Anae totaled 13 on the year. Elliss is currently tied for seventh all-time in single-season sacks at Utah.

Elliss has produced a whopping 37 total tackles this year while also adding a forced fumble and three pass breakups. Elliss recorded a sack in four straight games and came away with multiple tackles for loss five times in 2023.

East-West Shrine Game To Feature One More Ute

Earlier in the week it was announced Utah football all-time great Steve Smith Sr. will be inducted into the Shrine Bowl Hall of Fame.

Smith Sr. played wide receiver for the Utes from 1999-2000 after transferring from Santa Monica College.

From there, Smith Sr. was picked up in the third round of the 2001 NFL Draft by the Carolina Panthers where he spent the majority of his career till 2013. Smith Sr. spent two more seasons with the Baltimore Ravens starting in 2014 until he retired in 2016.

Smith Sr. has now become a familiar face as a sports castor and analyst for the NFL Network.

Michelle Bodkin is the Utah Utes Insider for KSLsports.com and host of both the Crimson Corner Podcast (SUBSCRIBE) and The Saturday Show (Saturday from 10 a.m.–12 p.m.) on The KSL Sports Zone. Follow her on XInstagram, and Threads: @BodkinKSLsports

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Former Utah Defensive End Heading To East-West Shrine Bowl