This past weekend, March 9th-11th, Beyond Sports Network held their NFL Scouting Combine. Top players from Division 1-AA, II, and III were all invited to participate and perform in front scouts from the Canadian Football League (CFL), Arena Football League (AFL), United Football League (UFL), and even the National Football League (NFL).
A number of athletes were invited to participate in the combine on Saturday and showcase game on Sunday. Players came from all across the U.S. from places such as Alabama and California.
The player that looked the most prepared for the "next level" was quarterback Dante Warren. Warren, a product of South Dakota University, showed great ability in the showcase game. He completed numerous passes and was solid when the pocket broke down. What impressed me the most about him was his ability to get creative. He was very aware of his surroundings and had great footwork in the pocket. He also showcased his speed and agility at the combing by running a 4.47 forty yard dash and an L-Drill that clocked in at 6.78 on the stopwatch.
The award for the heaviest hitter goes to Humboldt States own cornerback Jordan McGowan. McGowan was not the biggest of the group, but what he lacked in size he made up for in power. Multiple times he went head hunting over the middle and found his target. He immediately separated the receiver from the ball with an earth shaking blow.
The deadliest player at the combine was also the quietest. Running back Tommy Addison from Shepherd University in West Virginia had a silently solid weekend. While he placed second behind Frank Wolf III in most of the events at the combine, he showed why he was the top running back in the showcase game.
Addison ran a 4.47 forty yard dash. He got second among the running backs with 15 repetitions of 225 pounds on the bench press. "Touchdown Tommy", as he is referred to at Shepherd University, ran a 4.19 in the shuttle run to place second overall in the running backs group.
He then showcased his abilities in the game to solidify himself as the events top running back. While Frank Wolf III looked good in the combine, Addison showed off what matters most: game abilities. His vision was excellent and he stuck behind his lineman till the very end to maximize their capabilities and get the most out of a run.
All in all, the whole weekend was, in my opinion, a huge success. The quality of the combine rivals that of the official NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis, Indiana. They had all the necessary tests: bench press, vertical jump, broad jump, L-Drill, 5-10-5 shuttle run, and 40 yard dash.
The part about this weekend that I loved the most was the showcase game. The fact that they had a combine and showcase game all wrapped up into one weekend is a scouts dream. Not only do they get to see how they act at a combine, they also get to see how they are during a game. There are a lot of players that standout in drills and fall flat on the game field.
The Beyond Sports Network NFL Scouting Combine may be young, but, it is one of the up and coming events that professional football prospects will itching to be invited to.