Collegial combine observations 

March, 1, 2010
I love watching the combine workouts, the Senior Bowl practices and all the pre-draft stuff. For similar reasons as to why the recruiting world intrigues me, this stuff fascinates me too. If one guy can bench-press less, or run slower in a 40-yard dash, does that mean he's going to be less of a player than someone who's a freak at those evaluations?


These tests are trying to help quantify something that isn't so measurable in such a distilled version (without pads, without contact, etc.) My time around the recruiting world taught me why guys can be fast yet still stiff, which is one of the worst things you can say about an athlete. On Monday morning, for example, I watched Nebraska's great Ndamukong Suh clock (unofficially) a 5.07 40-yard dash; pretty good for a 307-pounder. But it's not freakish. You know what is freakish about Suh? His game film.

Anyhow. Here are some observations from the first half of the combine.

• I'm not surprised that Maryland OT Bruce Campbell put on a spectacular showing in Indy. The 6-foot-6, 314-pounder ran a 4.85 40, had a 32-inch vertical and did 34 reps on the bench. I didn't expect Oklahoma's Trent Williams -- at 6-5 and 315 pounds -- to rival those numbers, though. Williams ran a 4.88 40, verticaled 34.5 (tops among all O-linemen) and broad-jumped 9-5 (second among OL).