Today's opponent for now former Lobos in the Tow
practice facility was a group of cones, a stopwatch, and a tape measure
University of New Mexico held their annual Pro Day.
For those unaware the Pro Day is an opportunity for collegiate players to run drills for professional scouts. In the "old days" that would be only NFL scouts, but with the UFL surviving another season and the Arena Football League returning this year opportunities are there for these former Lobos.
Unlike recent Pro Days at UNM this year only one NFL scout showed up, which is obviously disappointing for aspiring former Lobos Erik Cook put it in proper perspective. "All it takes is one scout to get the times out to everyone."
As stated there are other pro leagues out there and representing the fledgling UFL was a familiar face to these Lobo players. "I am the defensive coordinator for Hartford UFL team," said former UNM Defensive Coordinator Osai Lewis. "They know I coached out here so they put me to work to scout some of the players out here."
So the former players get poked, prodded, and tested in the all important 40 yard dash, L- shaped cone drill, vertical and horizontal jumps, and bench press.
All which had Journal beat writer Greg Archuleta and myself to wondering what in the world do all these tests have to do with the game of football? I guess that is something for you all to ponder as well as these tests are done without pads.
While we contemplated this on the sidelines, the players attacked the drills and displayed their athleticism in hopes that a coach somewhere will notice their numbers. The three players that caught my eye today were Erik Cook, Victor James, and Clint Mc Peek.
Cook participated in the NFL combine a couple of weeks ago where he didn't post his best numbers so today was important for the big O-lineman. "I feel a lot better than I did at the combine," says Cook. "I set personal records in all my events."
Cook improves his 40 time
Former walk-on and play every position Victor James really did well today and his hard work should get him a tryout somewhere, as Greg had him unofficially running a 4.47 as well as a 37 inch vertical and 10'6.5" horizontal jump. "Drills don't necessarily make you a good football player," says James. "I did enough with these drills to get a tryout and my skills as a football player should take care of the rest."
Click here to listen to
Victor James goes horizontal
Another former Walk-on Clint McPeek physically
he was ready to step on to an professional practice field and he told
TheRedMenace.com that he has really been working on his speed since the
ended. "I have been training with Coach Aaron Day, he is our speed guy
and we've been working from 9-2 just trying to get as fast and big as
possible," said McPeek. Obviously the hard work paid off as Clint ran a
personal best 4.48 forty time…
Click here to listen
to C. McPeek
Around the Cone
Now comes the tough part for these three young men as well as the other participants in today's Pro Day… Donovan Porterie, Ivan Hernandez, Roland Bruno, Josh Taufele, Kendall Briscoe, Tray Hardaway, Frankie Solomon as all must hurry and wait in hopes of keeping their dreams of a career in football alive…