LOGAN – With the NFL draft quickly approaching, 20 USU football players worked out for a group of NFL scouts to prove they have what it takes to make it at the next level. Many of the players have been working out twice a day and following a strict diet in preparation for USU’s Pro Day that took place Wednesday morning.
“It’s a real relief now that I’m done,” former USU safety Marwin Evans said. “It’s overwhelming, all that training everyday, two times a day.”
USU’s Strength and Conditioning coach Dave Scholz said every single player achieved or exceeded what was expected.
“It’s a credit to those guys, how they’ve worked over four years,” he said. “Not just over 10 or 12 weeks.”
Quarterback Chuckie Keeton has been with the Aggie football program since 2011, but said this was something new.
“It’s definitely a once-in-a-lifetime experience that most guys don’t get,” he said. “It was definitely fun to be out here. It’s great to see all these guys again and be able to be on the field and compete with them.”
Kyler Fackrell has already been through the NFL combine, so he knew a little bit of what to expect. The former Aggie linebacker said Pro Day was a little “more relaxed.”
“I wanted to improve on bench, which I did, by one” he said. “I wanted 17 but I had (16 reps at 225 pounds).”
Evans was one player who turned heads. His 42-inch vertical jump was the best of Pro Day.
“I jumped 41-and-a-half two weeks ago,” he said. “So that was the goal to try to get the other one, the other half-inch.”
In addition to a strong vertical jump, the senior ran the 40-yard dash in 4.4 seconds.
“I was expecting a 4.5,” he said, “But I came out and did a 4.4.”
Wide receiver Devonte Robinson had the best 40-yard time at 4.29 seconds. His 10-foot-8 broad jump was also the longest of the day.
Bill Vavau’s bench at 32 reps of 225 pounds wasn’t topped by any other player.
“I was super impressed with him,” Scholz said. “He’s been coming back and forth to train with me and playing with his arena team. I mean, he’s been flying across the country trying to himself prepped and just did a terrific job.”
Keeton said he felt OK with his performance, which included a 4.63 40. As just about every Aggie fan knows, the Texas quarterback has plenty of talent, but injuries plagued his college career. That is something the scouts will take into consideration.
“The biggest thing for me is the physical aspect,” Keeton said. “They just want to make sure that my body is mature, and of course I have to be able to throw the ball. I think I threw it well.”
The main goal, of course, is to be drafted into the NFL April 28th. Some players may sign later, some may spend time in other leagues and some may not get picked up anywhere. Now, for most, its just a waiting game.
“Hopefully I’ll be getting some calls in the next week or so,” Evans said.