Fresno State's Derek Carr, who is second nationally in passing yards per game (380.1) and TD passes (32), is the first quarterback to accept an invitation to play in the 2014 Senior Bowl, Senior Bowl officials announced Monday.
Carr (6-foot-3, 218 pounds) has the unbeaten Bulldogs in position to possibly earn a BCS berth. He is No. 33 on NFL Media draft analyst Gil Brandt's list of the nation's top 100 seniors. His brother, David, was the No. 1 overall pick in the 2002 draft.
Also accepting an invitation was Northwestern quarterback Kain Colter, who has seen time at wide receiver for the Wildcats (he caught 43 passes in 2011) and will be playing that position at the Senior Bowl. He has battled injuries this season and attempted just 81 passes thus far; he has 135 rushing attempts, though.
Others who were announced as having accepted Senior Bowl invitations: Wisconsin wide receiver Jared Abbrederis (6-2, 190), Georgia Tech defensive end/linebacker Jeremiah Attaochu (6-3, 242), Nevada offensive tackle Joel Bitonio (6-4, 315), Rice kicker Chris Boswell (6-2, 200), BYU wide receiver Cody Hoffman (6-4, 215), Georgia tight end Arthur Lynch (6-5, 254) and Arkansas defensive end Chris Smith (6-3, 268).
Abbrederis is fourth in the Big Ten with 54 receptions for 849 yards (15.7 yards per catch) and six touchdowns. He began his career as a walk-on quarterback.
Attaochu moved to end from outside linebacker this season and it's expected he will move back to linebacker at the next level. He has eight sacks and 11.5 tackles for loss this season, and also has 27 career sacks, four shy of the school record.
Bitonio has started 36 consecutive games for the Wolf Pack. Bitonio is a good athlete who was a star in football, basketball and track in high school in Long Beach, Calif.
Boswell was considered the nation's top high school kicker as a prep senior, and he has kicked 13 career field goals of at least 50 yards, including three of at least 55 yards. He also is a weapon on kickoffs: 46 of his 60 kickoffs this season have been touchbacks, and 49 of his 80 last season were touchbacks.
Hoffman is BYU's career leader in receptions (241), receiving yards (3,382) and TD catches (34). This season, he has 38 receptions for 664 yards (17.7 yards per catch) and five touchdowns.
Lynch has 19 receptions for 318 yards and three TDs this season, and is known as a solid blocker.
Smith has 20.5 career sacks, and is third in sacks in the SEC this season with 8.5.
Previously announced attendees are Michigan State cornerback Darqueze Dennard, Arkansas center Travis Swanson and Virginia defensive tackle Brent Urban.
The Senior Bowl annually gathers the nation's top senior NFL draft prospects in Mobile, Ala., in late January for an all-star game coached by NFL staffs. The 2014 game is scheduled for Jan. 25.
Mike Huguenin can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. You also can follow him on Twitter @MikeHuguenin.