NASHVILLE, TENN. - Tarleton State will be well represented in the National Football League tonight when the Tennessee Titans host the Arizona Cardinals on ESPN.
Former Texan quarterbacks Richard Bartel and Nick Stephens continue their respective battles for a roster spot in the third preseason football game of the 2012 season.
"It's be awesome if they both scored a touchdown on back-to-back series, wouldn't it?" said Tarleton head coach Cary Fowler. "I tell you what, if you're a Tarleton State fan you'll be cheering for offense Thursday night.
"What a great opportunity for our university," he added. "I got to find a way to record that game so our recruits can see two quarterbacks from the same university - and even better, a division II university - go against each other in the NFL. That's huge for our program."
Bartel was under center for the Texans during the 2005 and 2006 seasons. He has the third best completion percentage (59.4) by any quarterback in school history, including 276 completions and 16 touchdowns in 2006.
In his second season with the Cardinals, Bartel is 10-22 for 86 yards and a touchdown in regular season games and is 8-13 for 130 yards and a touchdown through the first two preseason games in 2012.
Stephens transferred to Tarleton in 2010 from the University of Tennessee and proceeded to take snaps for the Texans during the 2010 and 2011 season.
His 2011 mark of 2,872 yards gained currently ranks him seventh on the all-time Tarleton list, while also throwing for more than 200 yards 13 times in two years and 300 yards five times.
After signing with the Titans following the NFL draft in April, Stephens has battled his way into the four-man quarterback rotation Tennessee has used this preseason. Stephens ran the two-minute offense against Seattle two weeks ago and went 4-5 for 24 yards and a passer rating of 86.7.
In addition to the battles of quarterbacks, there are other Stephenville and Tarleton ties performing in the game.
Kevin Kolb, who graduated from Stephenville High School, will also take snaps under center for the Cardinals while Kendall Wright, the brother of TexAnn basketball player Kiara Wright, will also be playing for the Titans.
Former Tarleton kicker Garrett Lindholm is also playing in the NFL and will be in Dallas this weekend as the St. Louis Rams play the Cowboys in Arlington at 7 p.m. Saturday.