USA Football, the sport’s national governing body and a member of the U.S. Olympic Committee, will conduct 24 U.S. National Team Regionals in 17 states (and the District of Columbia) in 2018 starting March 3 and 4 in Phoenix. Focused on skill development, Regionals are two-day, non-contact events where invited athletes are evaluated for U.S. National Team roster spots.
Since 2007, more than 20,000 athletes have participated in the U.S. National Team program. U.S. National teams represent the United States in International Federation of American Football competitions. IFAF is a provisional member of the International Olympic Committee and USA Football is the sole member of the U.S. Olympic Committee devoted entirely to football.
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“Our National Team program grows stronger every year,” said USA Football Senior Manager of National Teams Aaron Ingram. “The success and positive culture that our athletes experience results from a team effort between them, our coaches and partners like the U.S. Olympic Committee, the NCAA and the National Federation of State High School Associations. We look forward to kicking off 2018 in Phoenix next weekend.”
U.S. National Team Regionals welcome middle school- and high school-aged athletes. College and high school coaches assist as Regional instructors. Past Regional instructors include coaches from the Big 12, Big Ten, Pac-12 and SEC as well as high schools including DeSoto (Texas), Hyattsville (Maryland) DeMatha Catholic, Las Vegas Bishop Gorman and Saguaro (Arizona).
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Based on performance at a Regional, high school student-athletes are selected to represent the U.S. in annual International Bowl games or in IFAF World Championships. Middle school players may also participate in one of five single-day, non-contact U.S. National Team Middle School Showcases to earn an invite to one of three U.S. National Team Middle School Bowl Games.
The 2018 U.S. National Team Regional schedule (“M.S.” denotes Middle School Showcase):
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U.S. National Team alumni include wide receiver Corey Coleman (Cleveland Browns/Baylor), cornerback Trevon Diggs (Alabama), wide receiver Devin Funchess (Carolina Panthers/Michigan), running back Todd Gurley (Los Angeles Rams/Georgia), wide receiver Mecole Hartman Jr. (Georgia), wide receiver N'Keal Harry (Arizona State), quarterback Dwayne Haskins Jr. (Ohio State), defensive back Tyrann Mathieu (Arizona Cardinals/LSU), offensive lineman Jack Mewhort (Indianapolis Colts/Ohio State), running back/wide receiver Ty Montgomery (Green Bay Packers/Stanford), running back Jonathan Taylor (Wisconsin), defensive end Stephon Tuitt (Pittsburgh Steelers/Notre Dame) and quarterback Jameis Winston (Tampa Bay Buccaneers/Florida State).