San Diego State Football: Aztecs' Results at NFL Combine
San Diego State's football program has vastly improved over the past two seasons going 16-9 and playing in consecutive bowl games for the first time in more than 40 years.
Better play generally comes from better players. The Aztecs have several NFL caliber players eligible for the draft in 2012.
Four players from SDSU were invited to show off their skills for coaches and scouts at the NFL combine in Indianapolis this week.
The following is a quick glance at those players and how their results at the combine will affect their draft stock.
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After rushing for more than 3,200 yards and scoring 36 rushing touchdowns in two seasons with the Aztecs, Ronnie Hillman had little to prove at the combine.
With that said, Hillman had the best results of any Aztec who was invited.
After hearing concerns about his size, Hillman added 10 pounds of muscle to bring him up to an even 200 pounds at his official weigh-in.
The extra mass didn't affect Hillman's speed as he tied with Oregon's LaMichael James and Florida's Chris Rainey for the second best 40-yard dash time among running backs at 4.45 seconds.
Hillman graded slightly below James and slightly above Rainey. All three are similar style runners and should be good complimentary backs in the NFL.
Hillman didn't disappoint at the combine and should be a solid third-round pick.
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Quarterback Ryan Lindley ranked near the bottom of every category recorded at the combine. The good news for Lindley is that he's 6'4" and 229 pounds with good speed for his size and a strong arm.
Scouts will put more stock in Lindley's 12,690 passing yards, 90/47 touchdown-to-interception ratio and 55.5 completion percentage than his vertical leap or shuttle times at the combine.
Lindley has arguably the strongest arm of any quarterback in the 2012 class, but has issues with accuracy. He will need to work on consistency, awareness in the pocket and improved decision making to be successful at the next level.
Overall, Lindley projects as good developmental quarterback who should be selected in the mid-to-late rounds of the draft.
Senior linebacker Miles Burris was the Aztecs' lone defensive player invited to the combine.
As a three-year starter, Burris established himself as a consistent tackler and had a reputation of always being around the ball. In his final two seasons at SDSU, Burris averaged six tackles per game and had 17.5 sacks.
At 6'2" and 246 pounds, Burris possesses good size for a linebacker, but lacks the overall speed necessary to play on the outside in the NFL.
2012 represents one of the deepest groups of outside linebackers available in the draft, which further hampers Burris' likelihood of being taken in the early-to-middle rounds.
At the combine, Burris showcased his strength by finishing third in the bench press behind Oklahoma's Ronnell Lewis and Arkansas State's Demario Davis.
Burris' skill set translates more to an inside linebacker position in the NFL, and he should be an immediate contributor on special teams.
Expect Burris to be drafted in the sixth or seventh round.
Brian Stahovich was one of six punters invited to the NFL combine this week.
Going to the combine provided Stahovich with an opportunity to differentiate himself from other college punters and prove he was ready for the NFL.
The experience, however, may have done more harm than good. Stahovich ranked second to last in the group with a grade of 48. University of California punter Bryan Anger led the group with a grade of 52.7
Stahovich doesn't stand much chance of being drafted, but the combine allowed him to meet with and be seen by coaches and scouts who may give him a shot as an undrafted free-agent.