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Redskins-NCAA Tournament Connections: Part Three

Posted Mar 19, 2015

Check out which alma maters certain Washington Redskins players will be keeping an eye on during the NCAA Tournament.

-- Clinton Portis To Flex Football Knowledge On FOX Sports South
-- Celebrating Sammy Baugh's 101st Birthday

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Robert Griffin III will be paying attention to:

Second Round NCAA Tournament – Georgia St. vs. Baylor – March 19, 2015

Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III has certainly been a proud alum since he left the Texas-based school in 2012 to join Washington. He has regularly been spotted in attendance at various events, including basketball and football games.

Griffin started 40 of 41 games for the Bears and won the Heisman Memorial Trophy, Davey O’Brien Award, Walter Camp Award, Johnny Unitas Golden Arm and Chic Harley award following the 2011 season. For his career, he threw for 10,366 yards and 78 touchdowns.

With the NCAA Tournament here, perhaps it’s time for Griffin III to once again don his Baylor University basketball jersey.

Keenan Robinson and Jackson Jeffcoat will be paying attention to:

Second Round NCAA Tournament – Texas vs. Butler – March 19, 2015

Two former Texas Longhorns currently roam the defense for the Redskins in Robinson and Jeffcoat.

Jeffcoat got the first start of his career this past year, recording five tackles, a sack and an interception for Washington. While at Texas from 2010-2013, Jeffcoat made 33 starts and was a consensus All-American after making 68 tackles (22 for loss) and 13 sacks.

Robinson has become a staple in the Redskins' linebacking corp. Despite missing three games in 2014, he made 109 stops, the most in his career. For the Longhorns, Robinson was a two-time Butkus Award semifinalist and totaled 317 tackles in 51 games.

Logan Paulsen and Josh LeRibeus will be paying attention to:

Second Round NCAA Tournament – UCLA vs. SMU – March 19, 2015

It will be a locker room divided when the Bruins play the Mustangs.

A 2012 draft pick, LeRibeus started 28 games in three seasons at SMU and earned an all-conference honorable mention as a sophomore. With the Redskins, he’s seen his role steadily increase, especially after working himself back into peak physical condition.

Paulsen has been a steady contributor at tight end for the Redskins since he signed as a college free agent in April of 2010. He was a three-year starter at UCLA where he caught 71 passes for 888 yards and a touchdown. In 2009, he was voted a team captain for the Bruins.

Austin Spitler will be paying attention to:

Second Round NCAA Tournament – Ohio State vs VCU – March 19, 2015

Five-year veteran Austin Spitler signed with the Redskins on January 6, 2015, six days before his alma mater won the college football National Championship.

Now, the Buckeye will be watching his team take on the VCU Rams in the NCAA Tournament. Spitler played in 46 career games from 2005-2009, recording 82 tackles and two sacks. After playing much a reserve role through his junior season, he started all 13 games for the Buckeyes as a senior.

Darrel Young will be paying attention to:

Second Round NCAA Tournament – Lafayette vs. Villanova – March 19, 2015

Darrel Young played linebacker for the Wildcats, but switched to fullback in the NFL and has become a mainstay of the Redskins offensive.

A four-year starter at Villanova, Young posted 244 tackles (19.5 for loss), six sacks and one interception. In 2008, he was tabbed to the All-CAA team in 2008.

Signed by the Redskins as a college free agent in May of 2009, Young has become a leader on the field, and a role model off of it. He’s a regular participant in Redskins Charitable Foundation events and matched a career-best three touchdowns last season for Washington.

Ryan Kerrigan will be paying attention to:

Second Round NCAA Tournament – Purdue vs. Cincinnati – March 19, 2015

The Redskins own Boilermaker, Ryan Kerrigan’s Purdue squad will be going head-to-head with the Bearcats of Cincinnati.

Kerrigan left Purdue as one of the program’s most successful players. He finished tied for the all-time FBS record with 14 career fumbles forced (Big Ten record) and tied for second all-time at Purdue with 33.5 sacks.

For the Redskins, the unanimous All-American has continued that success, recording 38 career sacks, including a personal-best 13.5 sacks in 2014. The 6-4, 260-pound linebacker has also forced 15 career fumbles.

Perry Riley Jr. and David Amerson will be paying attention to:

Second Round NCAA Tournament – LSU vs. NC State – March 19, 2015

For Perry Riley Jr. and David Amerson, all eyes will be on the Tigers and Wolfpack as their two alma maters go toe-to-toe in a win-or-go-home matchup.

An alum of N.C. State, Amerson has become a staple of the Redskins’ defensive secondary since he was drafted 51st overall in the 2013 NFL Draft. In 109 tackles over two seasons, he’s deflected 17 career passes and picked off another two.

A fourth-round selection (103rd overall) in 2010, Riley has grown into a starting role for the Redskins, starting each game he’s played in over the last three seasons. In 47 career games for the Tigers, Riley started 22 of them and finished with 185 career tackles (88 solo) with two sacks and two interceptions.

Robert Thomas will be paying attention to:

Second Round NCAA Tournament – Arkansas vs. Wofford – March 19, 2015

Signed as a college free agent by the Redskins in May of 2014, defensive lineman Robert Thomas will be supporting his Razorbacks when they take Wofford in the tournament.

Thomas started his collegiate career at Coffeyville (Kan.) Community College, but transferred to Arkansas and appeared in 31 career games from 2011-2013. He made 72 career stops as a Razorback to go along with six career sacks.