East-West Shrine Bowl moving to Las Vegas, will compete directly with Senior Bowl

The nation's oldest college all-star game is moving venues and dates.
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The nation's oldest college all-star game is making moves, in more ways than one.

The East-West Shrine Bowl announced Tuesday its 2022 game will move to Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas, the site of this coming season's Pro Bowl. The game will also move dates, sliding back from its traditional mid-January Saturday to Thursday, Feb. 3. 

The Pro Bowl will be played Sunday, Feb. 6, in Vegas.

"This is a historic day for the East-West Shrine Bowl and Shriners Hospitals for Children," said Shriners Hospitals director of national sports management Bob Roller. "Our goal was to expand the reach and mission of our healthcare system and to hold a world-class sporting event, and this partnership with the NFL and Pro Bowl Week greatly enhances our ongoing mission that has helped more than 1.5 million children since opening in 1922."

The goal of expanding the Shrine Bowl's reach puts its in conflict with the Senior Bowl -- or, at least it puts NFL scouting staffs in conflict. 

Shrine Bowl week typically came immediately following the CFP national title game, a week ahead of the Senior Bowl -- allowing NFL teams to deploy their entire scouting staffs to both games.

Now, both games will take place virtually simultaneously. 

NFL Network will air the East-West Shrine Bowl in prime time on Thursday night, while the Senior Bowl will take place Saturday, Feb. 5, in Mobile, Ala. 

"The East-West Shrine Bowl is exemplary of the values of football, as all involved have the opportunity to inspire and encourage the children and families at Shriners Hospitals," NFL executive VP of football operations Troy Vincent said in the release. "In addition to community service and engagement, student athletes get an early start on the evaluation of their skills and coaches also showcase their talent, develop professionally, and network with colleagues, which is invaluable to the future of football."

The first Shrine Bowl took place the day after Christmas in 1925. The game was held in the Bay Area for decades through 2005 before moving around of late -- to San Antonio, to Houston, to Orlando, and then to St. Petersburg's Tropicana Field in 2012 through the 2020 game. The 2021 East-West Shrine Bowl did not happen due to the pandemic.